The Sioux Falls Stampede announced that forward C.J. Franklin has committed to play college hockey at Minnesota State University, Mankato following his USHL career.
Franklin has appeared in all but one of the team’s 34 games this season and produced 28 points (13g, 15a) which is tied for third on Stampede in scoring. The 18-year-old is also tied for the team lead with a plus-16 rating. Over his last 10 games, Franklin has recorded 14 points (5g, 9a) and a plus-eight rating. The Stampede have a 9-1-0 record over that stretch and are in first place in the Western Conference.
The Forest Lake, Minnesota native is playing his first USHL season after being selected by the Stampede in the fifth round (61st overall) of the 2012 USHL Entry Draft.
Franklin joins teammate Zeb Knutson who is also committed to Minnesota State University, Mankato. Four other current USHL players also have plans to play hockey at the school; Carter Foguth (Muskegon Lumnberjacks), Luca Frigo (Omaha Lancers), Eli May (Tri-City Storm), and Mike Huntebrinker (Waterloo Black Hawks).
Minnesota State University, Mankato is a member of the WCHA and has 14 USHL alumni on the Mavericks roster this season; J.P. Burkemper (Fargo/Des Moines), Tyler Elbrecht (Omaha Lancers), Chase Grant (Fargo Force), Eriah Hayes (Waterloo Black Hawks), Zach Lehrke (Cedar Rapids RoughRiders), Corey Leivermann (Fargo Force), Eli Zuck (Tri-City Storm), Zach Palmquist (Waterloo Black Hawks), Max Gaede (Sioux City Musketeers), J.P. LaFontaine (Green Bay Gamblers), Matt Leitner (Fargo Force), Brett Stern (Green Bay Gamblers), Dylan Margonari (Youngstown Phantoms), and Stephon Williams (Waterloo/Sioux Falls).
In addition, the Mavericks are coached by Mike Hastings, the all-time coaching wins leader in USHL history with 529 victories he accumulated in 14 seasons behind the bench of the Omaha Lancers (1994-2008)
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