Northeastern is adding a second transfer to the roster for 2021-22. According to Chris Heisenberg’s recruiting spreadsheet, Michigan State defenseman Tommy Miller will be transferring to Northeastern to play his fifth and final season of college hockey. Neither the school nor Miller have announced it, but Heisenberg’s sheet tend to be as good as gold when it comes to college hockey recruiting.
Miller is a ’99 birth year, right shot defenseman who clocks in at 6-foot-2, 190 pounds. He was Michigan State’s captain for the 2020-21 season, and previously played for the United States National Team Development Program U18 and U17 teams before arriving in East Lansing. He had 27 points in 135 games for the Spartans, with five of those being goals. His highest-scoring season was ten points (all assists) as a freshman. His lone goal of the 2020-21 season was a big one, scoring in overtime to beat Minnesota. He’s only taken 13 penalties in 4 years of college hockey, and he led Michigan State with 71 blocks last year (3rd in the nation, 273 blocks in his career).
Miller profiles as a much bigger defensive presence than an offensive weapon, but given the state of the Huskies’ roster for the upcoming season, that might just be exactly what the doctor ordered. We can expect that Miller will slide into the vacated spot in the defensive roster made when Mike Kesselring signed his professional contract, and bring a combination of experience, physicality, and stability to the blue line. Regardless of which left-shot defenseman he is paired with, having Miller on the back end might allow offensive dynamos like Jordan Harris, Jayden Struble, and Johnny DeRoche to activate and drive play more from the blue line.
We would expect Miller to slide into either the first or second right defense spot, with Julian Kislin occupying the other one. Kislin played much of last season alongside Jordan Harris, so Coach Madigan may opt to keep that pairing together and slide Miller onto Jayden Struble’s other side. If that’s where Miller goes, that could be arguably the most physical pairing of the Madigan era. Given his previous captaincy at Michigan State, he could even wear a letter this year for the Huskies.
It would be unexpected for the Huskies to add any more skaters via transfer at this point, barring any unforeseen professional signings or transfers out. The Huskies do still need to pick up another rostered goalie sometime before the start of the fall semester. As far as we can tell, all members of the Huskies’ senior class will be moving on to other schools or opportunities as well. If any further news breaks related to the roster for next season, you can count on us being there to cover it. Miller has been added to the recruiting spreadsheet, with a new color added to represent fifth year players.
As always, Go Huskies!