Former St. Louis Jr. Blues forward Jarrod Mermis has committed to play hockey at Denver University next year. Mermis follows the path of two other St. Louis standouts, Paul Stastny (Colorado) and Chris Butler (Buffalo), as he begins play in 2010-11.
When asked to comment, Mermis said, \”Well I\’m really excited to be going to Denver, there\’s no better place in the United States between the hockey and its surroundings.\” In addition, his younger brother, Dakota, is slated to join him before he graduates.
Jr. Blues Head Coach Jack Behan agrees, saying, \”When I got the call from Jarrod telling me he had committed to Denver I was so proud and excited for him. Jarrod was one of those players who might have been looked over by some because of his size but his effectiveness, talent and desire could never be challenged. He is one of those ultra competitive types who always pushes himself to be better.\”
However, the road to Denver didn\’t begin in Lincoln, Sioux City or with the Jr. Blues. Says Mermis, \”My time with the Jr. Blues was, to this day, my most fun year of hockey I\’ve ever played.\” But he goes on to say, \”The Affton Americans program has done a lot for me between, Brian Hazelton bringing me in to play for him and making hockey fun for me again, and Sean (Hazelton) helping me progress to Jack\’s team. Then everything I learned with the Jr. blues program that got me to the USHL. Those steps were the biggest reasons why I ended up where I did.\”
Certainly, the USHL was a pivotal time in Jarrod\’s career. \”The USHL was great, I enjoyed playing in that league for 3 years. I played with and against a lot of D1 and NHL prospects and learned a lot from them and the coaches taught equaly as much to help get me to the next step. All-in-all I\’ve enjoyed the ride, from Brian\’s team untill now and it\’ll just keep getting better. Thanks to the Affton Americans and Jr. Blues programs for giving me my foundation.\”
And Behan couldn\’t be happier. \”Its a great school academically and a terrific hockey program on and off the ice. Something that Jarrod deserves and has earned. The Jr. Blues are very proud of this young man and wish him continued success!\”