The Wolverine

May 2013

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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  michigan hockey Defensemen Sign With NHL Teams D efensemen Jon Merrill and Jacob Trouba combined for 14 goals and 26 assists in 2012-13. Both were eligible to return next season — Merrill for his senior year and Trouba for his sophomore campaign — but instead have signed contacts with their parent NHL teams, voiding the rest of their collegiate careers. Merrill signed with the New Jersey Devils March  27, while Trouba joined the Winnipeg Jets April 2. A finalist for CCHA Rookie of the Year in 2011, Merrill was an instant sensation with Michigan during its run to the NCAA title game (U-M finished runner-up), contributing seven goals and 18 assists in 42 games. The 6-4, 210-pound lefty, a second-round pick of the Devils in 2010, missed the first 22 games of the 2012 season, though, after being suspended by the program for a violation of team rules. He returned to the Wolverines for the final 19 games and notched two goals and nine assists. This year, he missed the first 19 contests after suffering a cracked vertebra in an exhibition match. Over U‑M's final 21 games, Merrill again had two goals and nine helpers, and his improved play — and the calming presence he had on senior defensive partner Lee Moffie — helped jumpstart the Maize and Blue. Freshman Jacob Trouba, who was named the CCHA's Best Offensive Defenseman after leading all league blue liners with 29 points (12 goals and 17 assists) this season, signed with the Winnipeg Jets April 2. photo by lon horwedel "The Devils have been really patient," Michigan head coach Red Berenson said. "They could have signed him after his first year. Second year he could have left with all the problems. Third year, he had a broken vertebra. "I think the kid on one side wanted to come back and finish, and the other side is excited about the next step." The CCHA's Best Offensive De-

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