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ASU Hockey: 34 days, 34 questions for the Sun Devils

By the numbers, counting down until the start of the Arizona State hockey season.

Michelle Hekle/Hekle Photo Images

There are 34 days until the quest for a repeat begins for the Arizona State hockey team. Here are 34 questions for the Sun Devils before they start the season Sept. 19 in Tempe against Niagara.

34: The amount of regular season wins before heading into the tournament with the No. 1 seed. Will that number increase or decrease this year?

33: The 33rd win of the season clinched the Western Collegiate Hockey League title? Will the Sun Devils repeat?

32: The 32nd game of the season is the final game in Tempe against Arizona, a game which the Sun Devils lost last year. How will they respond?

31: The last two digits of my hotel room in Delaware during the national tournament last year (231). What will my room number be this year?
Eds: I honestly thought about this for a few days, and this is the best I got. If you can think of why the number 31 is significant, please comment below.

30: The jersey number of goalie Lucas Felbel. With Robert Levin in net, how will Felbel respond as Joe D'Elia's de facto replacement?

29: The jersey number of Kory Chisholm. A similar player to graduated-senior Troy Scott, will Chisholm be able to replace him?

28: The jersey number of Michael Cummings. He will be expected to have a big role on the team this year, possibly as high as the top line. Will he rise to the challenge?

27: The amount of points by recruit Jared Morris last season in the Manitoba Junior Hockey league. How will he do in his freshman year?

26: The number of assists by Liam Norris last year. Players and coaches praise his ability to make everyone on the ice better, so who will benefit from playing on his line this year?

25: The number of games played it took until the Sun Devils suffered their first loss of the season in 2013-14. Will they top that number this year?

24: The team-leading number of goals last season by Colin Hekle. Who will find the net most often this season?

23: The amount of losses coach Greg Powers has sustained since he became head coach in 2010. In 160 games. By how many will that number rise this year?

22: Number of weeks Arizona State was ranked No. 1 nationally last season. Will the team be able to match that this year?

21: The number of games played for Eric Rivard last season. He was a force when he was on the ice, and what will he be able to do with a full season of healthy play?

20: The amount of goals for Ryan Ostertag last season, with shifts spread from the top line at nationals all the way down to the third throughout the year. This year he'll play on the top line with assist-whiz Liam Norris. Will that number go up?

19: The jersey number and amount of games played for Chris Blessing. How will the transfer respond this year?

18: The jersey number of defenseman Brett Prechel. The graduated senior is the only departure from last year's blue line. How will the young unit play this year?

17: The jersey number of departed forward Kale Dolinski. How will the Sun Devils make up for his 71 points and ACHA Player of the Year award?

16: The number of consecutive wins in Tucson since Powers took over in 2010. Powers has never lost to the Arizona Wildcats on the road; will that change this year?

15: The number of conference wins in the inaugural season of the Western Collegiate Hockey League. Will Arizona State repeat as conference champions?

14: The jersey number for Faiz Khan. He played a big role on the team in 2012-13, then battled through injury last season. What will he do in his senior year?

13: The game number this year of the first road conference game (Oct. 30 against Colorado). The Sun Devils were undefeated on the road last year, will they be able to replicate that success?

12: The jersey number of Tommy Cooney. Players and coaches have raved about his speed, and he'll get a shot at ice time this year. Will he reward their trust?

11: The jersey number of graduated-senior Danny McAuliife. He was an Arizona native, assistant captain and finished in the top-five in scoring three of his four years in Tempe. How will the Sun Devils replace his leadership, both on and off the ice?

10: The date of the first game against Arizona this year (Oct. 10, 10/10). What will the excitement level be at Oceanside when the Wildcats come to town?

9: The number of graduated seniors from last year's class. Will the young squad this year make up for the departed experience?

8: The number of shutouts by Levin last season including the postseason. He also won the ACHA Rookie of the Year and tournament MVP. What will he do for an encore this year?

7: The jersey number of Patrick Yudez. The freshman showed what he was made of in Delaware last year, having an incredible run in the tournament. What will he do with more playing time this year?

6: The amount of new recruits this year. Will the Sun Devils repeat as a the team with the ACHA Rookie of the Year?

5: The national tournament seed for Stony Brook last year. Arizona State beat the Seawolves in the semifinals and will play them three times next season. How will the team do?

4: The amount of goals allowed in four games by the Arizona State defense in the national tournament. Come tournament-time this year, will that number go up or down?

3: The jersey number of the new captain Brett Blomgren. He has big skates to fill, grabbing the "C" from three-year captain Colin Hekle, who graduated last year. How will Blomgren follow up Hekle?

2: Arizona State's ranking when it welcomed No. 1 Minot State to town on Nov. 7. Also the amount of goals the Sun Devils scored (won 2-1). Will Arizona State play in another No. 1 vs. No. 2 game this year?

1: The amount of national championships the Sun Devils have won in their history. Will they add another to their trophy case?