Coach Don Lucia's Gophers will play 36 games next season, including 20 at Mariucci Arena.
Minnesota will play 36 games, which includes 20 regular-season home contests at Mariucci Arena, during the 2012-13 season. The Gophers, who won the WCHA's MacNaughton Cup last season and advanced to the NCAA Frozen Four, will also play their final 28 games as a member of the WCHA during 2012-13. The three WCHA teams who Minnesota will face four times next year are Alaska Anchorage, Minnesota State and Wisconsin.
Minnesota begins the season with two home games against soon-to-be Big Ten conference rival Michigan State. The Gophers will face the Spartans on either Thursday, Oct. 11, and Friday, Oct. 12, or on Friday, Oct. 12, and Sunday, Oct. 14. The exact dates of Minnesota's season-opening series will be announced in the future. The Gophers will then play at least one regular-season game for each of the next nine weeks before taking two weeks off prior to the Mariucci Classic.
After facing Michigan State, the Gophers will make their first road trip of the season and open WCHA competition at Michigan Tech (Oct. 19-20) before returning home to face Canisius for one game on Sunday, Oct. 28. Minnesota then hosts Minnesota State on Nov. 2 and plays against the Mavericks in Mankato on Nov. 3.
The Gophers then travel to face Alaska Anchorage for a pair of games (Nov. 9-10) before hosting a Border Battle series against Wisconsin (Nov. 16-17). The Gophers will spend the Thanksgiving holiday in Vermont this year as they face the Catamounts on Nov. 23-24.
Minnesota closes out November and opens December with a series against Nebraska Omaha at Mariucci Arena on Nov. 30-Dec. 1. The Gophers then play their final series before taking two weeks off at Colorado College (Dec. 7-8).
The Maroon and Gold return to action at the Minnesota-hosted Mariucci Classic to close out the 2012 calendar year. This year's Mariucci Classic, which will be held on Dec. 28-29, will have an NCAA tournament feel to it, as the Gophers welcome Air Force, Boston College and Alabama in Huntsville. Minnesota, Air Force and Boston College all participated in the NCAA tournament last year, while Minnesota and Boston College advanced to the Frozen Four, which was hosted by Alabama in Huntsville. The matchups for this year's Mariucci Classic will be announced in the future.
The Mariucci Classic begins an eight-game homestand for the Gophers which includes one game against Notre Dame (Jan. 5), two games against Alaska Anchorage (Jan. 11-12), two games against North Dakota (Jan. 18-19) and one-game against Minnesota State (Jan. 25).
The Gophers then begin a five-game road stretch at Minnesota State (Jan. 26) to complete the home-and-home series with the Mavericks before traveling to St. Cloud State for games on Feb. 8-9. Minnesota completes the road trip at Wisconsin on Feb. 15-16.
Minnesota returns home to welcome in-state rival Minnesota Duluth for two games (Feb. 22-23) before closing out its home schedule with a pair of games against Denver (March 1-2). The Gophers then complete the regular season at Bemidji State on March 8-9.
The Gophers will play two exhibition games next season when they host Lethbridge on Oct. 6 and the U.S. Under 18-Team on Oct. 26.
All schedule dates and game locations are subject to change. Start times and a media broadcast schedule will be announced in the future.