Gwozdecky: Apples to Apples

     The dean of Western Collegiate Hockey Association coaches — Denver’s George Gwozdecky — has noted to Rink and Run that his salary listed here last week in a compliation of league figures was not a base salary, but a figure that included incentive-compensation money.

     The salary graphic was intended to represent base salaries, however the figure taken from the Denver Post for the 2007-08 season ($355,356) was more than that. Our apologies for that. Gwozdecky, entering his 16th season at Denver this fall and 29th overall in the coaching business, said it was not comparing "apples to apples" in his case. 

      Gwozdecky also mentioned to Denver Post writer Mike Chambers that his base salary ranks fifth among 10 WCHA coaches. If the other figures are accurate, the top three coaches in the league by salary would be Wisconsin’s Mike Eaves, Minnesota’s Don Lucia and North Dakota’s Dave Hakstol. It’s likely the next two would be coaches at private schools — Colorado College’s Scott Owens and Gwozdecky.

       St. Cloud State’s Bob Motzko would head the second five, followed by Minnesota Duluth’s Scott Sandelin, Minnesota State-Mankato’s Troy Jutting, Michigan Tech’s Jamie Russell and Alaska Anchorage’s Dave Shyiak.

      ALSO, from Denver, defenseman Patrick Wiercioch, a member of the 2009 WCHA all-rookie team, told the Denver Post on Monday he’s returning for his sohomore season. Wiercioch was a second-round pick by Ottawa in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft. With his return, the Post’s speculation is the Denver Pioneers will be favored in the WCHA in 2009-10 and will likely be No. 1 in Division I preseason polls.

     "All signs pointed back to Denver," Wiercioch told the Post from home in Maple Ridge, British Columbia. "It’s 100 percent. We have a team capable of winning the national title, and that was really the big thing."