Rosen’s sacrifice proves his value as a Terrier

By Arielle Aronson/DFP Staff

Traditionally, hockey players stand out most because of what they can do on the ice. But on Sunday night, it was junior forward Ben Rosen’s behavior off the ice that made an impact for the No. 10/11 Boston University men’s hockey team.

Rosen, a steady fixture at center on the fourth line, volunteered to sit out an exhibition game against the U.S. National Under-18 Team in order to allow the team to experiment with other players at center to use in case of injury or positional struggles. The try-out at center in game conditions was vital for the Terriers, who are down their top two pivots after losing senior Corey Trivino and sophomore Charlie Coyle during the winter break.

“He kind of volunteered not to play to tell you the truth, which was nice,” said coach Jack Parker. “I wanted to try [junior forward Ryan] Santana at center to see how he would do. I tried to get some guys playing some different positions.”

While the Terriers have been exploring different replacements in practice, it is difficult to tell how a center will perform unless he plays in an actual game. Unfortunately for the Terriers, the Hockey East standings are tight again this season, thus leaving little room for the Terriers to experiment with different centers in official games.

Sunday’s exhibition time was a perfect opportunity for BU to test different players at the position, but before Rosen volunteered to sit, it was difficult to determine whom to scratch. The centers on the top two lines, senior captain Chris Connolly and sophomore Sahir Gill, both have just two games under their belt at center on modified lines that are still trying to establish chemistry.

Freshman Cason Hohmann centers the third line, but Hohmann is just beginning to blossom in his role on the team. Scratching him could set the still-adjusting Hohmann a step back. Rosen only started becoming a lock in the lineup this season. Scratching him could also disrupt his rhythm.

So when Rosen (who was unavailable for comment after the game) volunteered to sit out for the good of the team, he made a difficult decision a non-issue.

“It shows he’s a really good teammate,” Connolly said. “He’s been doing well for us and just allowed us to get a different look. Santana I thought played real well there, so that will always be another option if we need to do that.

“I think it really showed a lot of leadership on Ben’s part. That’s the kind of teammate we need around here.”

Rosen’s sacrifice would have been impressive in any situation, but it is even more remarkable considering Rosen had to fight his way into the lineup through his first two seasons.

Rosen played in nine games his freshman year and was a healthy scratch for the first eight games of his sophomore year. He finally got his break starting as a fourth line center in a game against Merrimack on Nov. 12. The opportunity to play came in foreign territory for the Syosset, N.Y. native; Rosen came to BU as a defenseman. He had never played center.

Rosen learned the position quickly and stayed in the lineup for the rest of the year. This season is Rosen’s first as an established player in the lineup. He transitioned from being a defenseman two years ago to currently ranking third on the team in faceoff wins (42-and-44) among the seven players on this year’s squad who have taken 45 or more draws this season. The only two players with better numbers than Rosen are the departed Trivino and Coyle.

“He’s done a great job in that role [as center],” Parker said. “He deserves some more ice time. We’ll try to get him some more. He could move up the way he’s been playing and center the third line.”

Regardless of what line Rosen plays on, he – in part due to sacrificing his ice time Sunday night – proved himself a role model on a young team still trying to navigate through a difficult time.

“The older guys on this team need to kind of lead the way,” Connolly said. “We have a lot of young guys, so guys like Ben and the juniors and seniors need to step up and kind of show the younger guys the way. He did that tonight and allowed somebody else to have the opportunity to show what they can do. It was pretty impressive on his part.”


  1. This is good to read. Good to know we have some leaders on the team, letter or not, considering this team is constantly compared to ’09 which was full of irreplaceable leaders. I know it’s kind of a small gesture in some eyes, but at this juncture I think it’s something huge coming from a kid like Rosen who’s constantly battling for himself. Doing it for the good of the team.

    This is what I want to read about the boys I show up to support night in and night out, win or lose, great hockey or not. This is the kind of kid I want to support.

  2. What a really unselfish act by a real team player. This makes me believe in the guys again, that they are not our only for themselves but see a bigger picture. I like Rosen and how he plays. I hope the coach does give him more ice time. He is certainly good enough and now deserves it more than ever.

  3. Someone should send this article to that ingrate Coyle, although it might be too tough for him to read and understand. Phrases like “sacrifice”, “leadership”, and “good teammate” might confuse him.

  4. They seemed to have come together after the disaster two weeks ago. They have enough vets to overcome their problems ad get ready for the beanpot. I wonder if Coyle ever really wanted to play for this team?

  5. Hey, Charlie Coyle. Take a lesson about what it means to be a team guy. Fantastic article on a player that has busted his tail and gave up his place to help out his team. Good for you Ben Rosen! Hey just made my fantasy team…

  6. I am not sure a player like Chiasson gets the unselfish thing. The way he keeps taking foolish penalties and mouthing off, after being repeatedly warned by the coach, makes me think he is a “me” guy. The guy needs to shut up and play

  7. I must say that I’m very impressed to see any athlete in this day and age, doing something more for the team and his teammates than just himself. I have seen Rosen play for 2 years now and he continues to show dedication, hustle and an all out attitude. If more players would follow his example, the Terriers might be ranked number 1 in the country. I hope to see much more of him on the ice than before. At the risk of sounding too corny, it is obvious that he plays for the name on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back (line taken from “Miracle”)

  8. Was Rosen drafted? If so, by what team? He is a guy I’d want playing for my team

  9. I am hoping noone believes that rosen a career 4th liner would volunteer to be out of the lineup. coach parker i am fighting every week to stay in the lineup tonight i volunteer to sit? parker would say nice attitude and bench him. whoever asked what round he got drafted needs his head examined

  10. Rosen is a free agent – never drafted.

    Rosen is well-respected and liked by his teammates. Hard worker and smart young man both on and off the ice. Comes from a good family. Spent part of the off-season balancing an internship, Summer classes and maintaining his training regimen.

  11. Dear Anonymous #9:

    “He kind of volunteered not to play to tell you the truth, which was nice,” said coach Jack Parker.

    You need your head examined.

  12. Anonymous #9 (the one who can’t spell or put together a coherent sentence).

    Rosen did volunteer to sit out an exhibition game. Parker said he didn’t ask Rosen, it was Rosen’s idea. He was in the position of sitting himself for part of his career and showed empathy for others by giving up his spot for one game so others have a chance. If the world had more people like him in it perhaps it wouldn’t suck so much. I hope he gets more playing time and eventually signs with a team when he graduates.

    PS #9, Did mommy spell and grammar check your comment? I hope you are not a BU student, because if you are, we need to do a much better job of screening freshman applicants.

  13. Rosen is coo. but what do you folk think of Chiasson? A ton of talent, but what a head case

  14. I really can’t put my finger on it, but Chiasson is really hard to get behind sometimes.

    The only way I see it is that as many times as Chiasson mouths off to refs, gets into it with the other team, and takes dumb penalties, I can;t help but shake my head at him every time. Conversely, when Garrett Noonan does all of the above, I can’t help but laugh and still support him the way he is. Maybe that’s just me, but hey. I like local kids with a lot of heart playing for BU. (And no Charlie Coyle has no heart)

    I liked Chiasson a lot last year and thought getting an A was well deserved for this season. But now I’m not completely sure about that.

  15. I thought the A would help him especially in terms of cleaning up his on ice comportment, but I guess not. He was incessantly jawing with a kid on Sunday night, and that was an exhibition game. I just think he is an easy mark for the opposing team to suck into a penalty at a pivotal point in a game.

  16. I saw more teamwork in the Merrimack and exhibition game than I saw in any two other consecutive games this season. Now this …. a class act by Rosen.

    I want to root for 18 players who want to wear those jerseys with pride, not kids who only look at their self interest and the NHL.

    I am proud of how BU/Parker handled the Trivino & Coyle situations, and how the team seems to be handling its future as well.

  17. Yes, I have to give Parker major props for handling those two unfortunate situations.

    I shudder to think if this team gets a key injury. They are so thin right now

  18. Leadership and respect is earned as it appears Rosen knows. Apparently so do his teammates. IMHO I was take the “A” away from Chaisson, who obviously doesn’t deserve it and doesn’t know how to handle the responsibility that comes with it and give the “A” to Rosen.

    That would send a message to the entire team and BU Nation.

  19. If I had never seen a BU hockey game in my life I would think Rosen should be a hobby baker candidate based on what I just read above. Guys, he is a role player with a good attitude. Not the savior of BU hockey. We need goal scorers. Go BU.

  20. What a great story. After all the bad news and press, it is so refreshing to see a player doing something for others instead of just himself. I’m very impressed with Rosen as a player and even more so now as a person. One of the previous posters suggested making him an assistant captain. I like him much better than # 9. How about it coaches?

  21. To the anonymous above me: Rosen may not be the ‘savior of BU hockey,’ but right now, all the guys need a push in the right direction in terms of attitude. We lost two key offensemen over break and, to be honest, even before that I’m not sure our overall attitude was that great (i.e. people thinking more about themselves than the team as a whole). The guys need a positive role model and Rosen showed he could be that.

    As for the Coyle haters: It’s upsetting that there seem to be so many people who are quick to denounce a kid who is trying very hard to make his dreams come true. (Oh, and let’s not forget that one of those dreams was to come and play at BU, so you can’t really say he never wanted to play here.) To be honest, I always considered Coyle to be one of the hardest workers on the team, probably the hardest worker out of the sophomores, at the very least. (I’m not knocking the other guys, but Coyle definitely showed a greater dedication/better work ethic.) He seemed to be a person who was concentrating on hockey, which is something you all appreciated when he was playing for our team. Even if the guy didn’t score a lot of goals, you can’t say that he never tried. This year, especially, I felt that he upped the physicality of his game and I felt that he was a force to be reckoned with in terms of handling the puck/creating opportunities for his teammates. As a BU student, I know that the workload can be tough, so I can’t even imagine what it would take to handle the academic workload, as well as the commitments of an athlete. And even though many of us (myself included) are quick to scorn the CGS/athlete curriculum, what it comes down to is that they still need to do the work and, for Coyle, that was taking him away from his focus: hockey. I’m thankful for what he did for us during his time at BU and I think that it’s unfair that people are downplaying his achievements out of bitterness for him having left. We should save such anger for someone like Trivino, who was supposed to be a leader, but who instead made choices that led to him being thrown off the team. At least Coyle left in a manner becoming of a BU player.

  22. What Rosen did, although not earth shattering, proves that there are players willing to look out for the team as a whole. I would second (third ?) making a change in assistant captains. He proved his leadership and team concept first mindset and that is what a team captain is supposed to be all about. Not just racking points and whinning like a little sissy as one of them does now.

    Give him an A.

  23. Why is Rosen getting praised for being too lazy/unmotivated to play a game? All this shows is that he can’t get up for every game. This is not the trait of a winner.

  24. To Anonymous on January 12 at 7:30: I agree that Ben Rosen is a fine example of a BU hockey player who understands the meaning of team and commitment to the program. However, your thoughts regarding Charlie Coyle are, in my opinion, incorrect. Although the academics are challenging, he passed his first year and understood that it would require as much dedication in the classroom as on the ice. I think you don’t understand that he was paid a substantial amount of money to leave BU in the middle of the season. All he cared about was his OWN hockey career and had little or no regard for his teammates. He lied his way out of town until his check cleared. Also he went to an inferior league that has many kids younger and not as developed as him. He left as a coward and ruined his legacy and reputation on the way out. We don’t need quitters and losers on this team.

  25. A selfish quitter – that’s Coyle. I had no gripe with his play on the ice and the fact that he tried hard when out there. but the fact that he took the money and ran MIDSEASON, there is no excuse for that. I wish him good health, but I hope his dream never gets realized. sorry

    As for Trivino, he was selfish too. But it sounds like he has a substance abuse problem that was too big for him to handle by himself. I hope he admits his problem to himself and gets the help he needs. and my heart goes out to the woman he terrorized

  26. Very fitting that Rosen’s first goal of the year was a clutch game trying one against Harvard. Now that he has potted one, I feel he will get several more this season. Good for you Rosen.