The nine future members of the WCHA recently concluded productive meetings in Detroit, during which the league approved a 28-game conference schedule and a postseason tournament involving all nine schools.
The WCHA has been hurt by team defections to other leagues that take effect in the fall of 2013. At that time, the league will consist of Alaskan schools UAA and UAF, plus current WCHA teams Minnesota State-Mankato, Bemidji State, and Michigan Tech. Current CCHA programs Northern Michigan, Lake Superior State, Bowling Green, and Ferris State will also join the conference.
A 28 game conference schedule is crucial for both Alaskan programs, which are geographic outliers in college hockey. Since UAA and UAF traditionally also appear in each other's tournaments, that leaves only two other non-conference games to schedule. 34 games is the Division I standard.
Issues such as postseason tournament format and breakdown of conference games will be approved at a later time.