Photo Credit :Patrick Garriepy-Patrick Garriepy Photography
The final 2000-birth year player for the Northeast Generals, Jonathan Young, has a college home. The dependable Northeast General heads to join Tyler Cooper at St. Olaf this upcoming season. This is a player that had his own hashtag as the Generals all worked as a unit to help promote the type of player that Young is to the college game. The hashtag #CommitJYoung, finally reached its logical conclusion today as Young committed to play for the Oles of St. Olaf in this upcoming season.
While Erikson and GM Matt Dibble both rightly think Young is a Division One-level player, this year has been tough on 2000 birth year players needing a home. The transfer portal filled with players taking their extra year to play, combined with two programs being suspended have created a lack of roster spots that Young would have likely taken. The landscape for recruiting will be different next season, as there are potentially at least five programs that could either come into existence at the Division One Level, or be revived at it (Alabama Huntsville, Robert Morris, Alaska Anchorage, Lindenwood, and potentially Tennessee State).
With that said, the Oles are a wonderful place for Young to go, as they are consistently one of the better Division Three schools, and these ranks have a history of producing professional players. More and more in the sport, the old model of ” if you’re good, they will find you” is true, and Young found the right fit for him. The Division Three circuit will be packed with players that play a Division One game, and make their games even more competitive.
With all of that said, here is what Bryan Erikson, Generals Head Coach said about Young in April ” Jonathan was always a player I coveted. Big, can skate and can rip the puck. The one knock on him was that he was just a goal scorer. That he didn’t use his size. And I felt with the way we emphasize the forecheck he could thrive in those areas of his game that needed work. But I think as he matured so did his game. I also believe that the relationship he has with the organization has helped him. He trusts us. We asked him to change his game a little and he bought in completely. He is now very very physical, has learned to be a great penalty killer, is a weapon on the Power Play and is a guy I rely on in the defensive zone. Those are parts of his game that he maybe wasn’t forced to do before. But he has come here and worked so incredibly hard both on and off the ice to improve. I am so proud of him as a person. Just a wonderful kid that craves knowledge. Always reading, always wanting to get more knowledgeable about whatever the topic is, space, science, history, habit building you name it. Just a curious kid that works hard at everything and you are seeing that hard work pay off with his production on the ice. He is not only going to be a very successful division 1 hockey player he is going to be an extremely successful person.”
Young is a humble player. As we said of his 100 point milestone in the NAHL ” Young is so humble about his NAHL career, he did not even realize that he was about to hit the 100 point milestone until his mom Karen told him a few days before he did it against the Danbury Jr. Hat Tricks.” This episode, among many shows the type of player that the Oles are getting. With Tyler Cooper joining him, the Oles are getting two top flight players from the Generals program.
Erikson is about helping his players find their next step. Today, finally, after a long year for Young to get to this point, he has found his, and is set up for success with the Oles, and beyond.
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