I'm sure that anyone reading this article was well aware of the NHL Winter Classic game that took place between the Boston Bruins and Philadelphia Flyers on New Year's Day at legendary Fenway Park. The game was a huge success for the NHL, and the sport of hockey in general, and will certainly live on in the memories of the fans and players involved.
But coming on Feb. 6th, the No. 3 Wisconsin Badgers men's hockey team will play host to the Michigan Wolverines. On the surface, this may seem like any ordinary college hockey matchup, just another blip on the radar of a long season. That is, until you take into account the venue in which the two teams will play: Camp Randall Stadium.
That's right, this game is set to be played at the storied home of the Wisconsin Badgers football team. Like the Winter Classic at Fenway, this game should be special for everyone that will be involved.
As a hockey player, and fan, that will take his place in the student section at Camp Randall for this game, I could not be more excited for this to happen.
Hockey is a game that was born outside, and some would say it is meant to played outside. Some of my earliest memories as a hockey player are on a pond in western New York. On that pond, with some of my friends, I learned the game of hockey, and my passion for the sport was born.
My story is like many of the nation's hockey players, as well as hockey players around the world.
That is why events like this are so special for the players and fans involved. It brings back the nostalgia of every hockey player's childhood on the pond behind their house.
Obviously this game has not, and will not, receive nearly as much media attention as the NHL's game at Fenway, but that will not damper the spirits of those who will be attending or playing in the game.
Both schools have experience in outdoor games. The Badgers defeated Ohio State at the Frozen Tundra Classic at Lambeau Field in 2006, and Michigan and Michigan State battled to a tie in the "Cold War" at Spartan Stadium in 2001.
But, a new generation of Badger and Wolverine hockey players will be able to experience the joys of playing in an outdoor hockey game for themselves during the Hockey Classic at Camp Randall.
When those players take to the ice on Feb. 6th, I'm sure all of their eyes will light up as they take in the magical winter atmosphere of that sure to be cold Wisconsin evening.