Quinnipiac University has landed a commitment from USA Hockey NTDP U-18 center Ty Smilanic, a potential first round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft.
Smilanic, who was previously committed to the University of Denver, is a big recruiting coup for the Bobcats' staff. The Elizabeth, Colo., native chose Quinnipiac over a couple of top programs, including North Dakota.
Smilanic was the top uncommitted player available for the 2019-20 season prior to his announcement Wednesday. Back in September, Smilanic was my third rated uncommitted '02 in the U.S.A., behind Matt Beniers (Hingham, Mass.) and Mark Estapa, who have committed to Harvard and Michigan, respectively.
Smilanic plays a pro style, strong, and heavy game. He’ll drive the net with authority and has that explosive stride to power his way past opposing defenders. He can protect pucks and control possession. The Elizabeth, Colo., native has a hard shot and can unleash a wrist shot with solid accuracy. A former Denver commit, a knock on him is that he’s just using college hockey as a pit stop on the way to the NHL. Skill-wise, any school in the country would be more than happy to land Smilanic.