At the 2020 draft, the New York Islanders selected prep school product Alex Jefferies in the fourth round. The young forward had excellent numbers with 33 goals and 79 points in 32 games for the Frederick Gunn School, also known as the Gunnery.
Jefferies made his collegiate debut this season with Merrimack College where he’s immediately made an impact. In eleven games the true-freshman has four goals and ten points. When I spoke to his coach just before the new year he called Alex one of the smartest players in college hockey.
With voting beginning for college hockey’s biggest award, the Hobey Baker, Jefferies’s play for Merrimack has found him on the list of candidates.
New York Islanders Alex Jefferies makes Hobey Baker list of 50
A list of 50 players from Div 1 schools was nominated by the athletic departments from Div 1 schools for the top award, and as you guessed it, Jefferies is part of that group. The list includes players like Colin Bilek (Army), Cole Caufield (Wisconsin), and Jordan Kawaguchi (UND).
The Hobey Baker has a three-phase process to widdled down the group before naming a winner. First is this list of 50, wherefrom now until March 7 at midnight fans can vote* for the player they feel deserves the award. The second phase (which will also have a fan vote*) sees that list of 50 cut down to ten and then the third and final phase is the top three for the award.
(*The fan vote accounts for 1% of the total ballot in each phase.)
At the time of writing, the fan vote for Jefferies is at 0.2%. Which feels about right. Jefferies is a good player but he’s still a freshman. Only two freshmen have won the award: Paul Kariya in 92-93 and Jack Eichel in 2014-15. Kariya put up 100 points in 39 games of U Maine while Eichel had 71 points in 40 games for Boston University. Jefferies isn’t at that level.
Just being nominated for the award is certainly an honor for the young man. It’s also another feather in the Islanders cap when it comes to their 2020 draft class that received underwhelming reviews.