STEVENS POINT, Wis. – With more than 140 alumni in college hockey over the last nine years, including more than 70 who made their commitments as members of the Bulls roster, North Iowa is all about pointing the way to the next level.
Forward Jordan Roo is pointing the way to new territory himself, announcing a commitment to the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point this week. Roo will join the Pointers’ roster next season, and will become the first player ever to go from the Bulls to UWSP, an NCAA Division III school in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
The second-year Bull moved into a leadership role as an alternate captain this season, after starting his junior career in and out of the North Iowa lineup. A strong showing at the midway point of the season, including several multi-point games around Halloween, and a ton of extra work behind the scenes helped push Roo into the everyday lineup for head coach Todd Sanden.
“That still puts a lot of pressure on him to go in there and make sure that Stevens Point wants to come back here and get players in the future,” said Sanden. “We’re confident that he’s going to be able to handle that.”
Roo made a name for himself in the 2019 postseason, notching two assists in the Bulls’ West Division-clinching victory over the Alexandria Blizzard, and putting up a point in each of the team’s pool play games at the Fraser Cup championship tournament as well.
This season, though, the Champlin, Minnesota native has pushed his game into the stratosphere, posting a team-best 46 points through the opening week of January and appearing in all 31 of the team’s games thus far. His 13 points on special teams is a team-best, and three of his goals this season have been game-winners.
“He’s done a great job in his development here, doing things that will help him be successful,” said Sanden. “He was an in-and-out guy at times in the first half of last season, and he started to play faster, he was transitioning pucks quicker and with (Jack) Giddings and (Nick) Johnson, they were our best line in the last half of the season.”
He’ll face high expectations again next season, joining a program where his older siblings have thrived and where runs deep into March have become the norm. The Pointers have appeared in four of the last six Division III championship games, and also reached the semifinals in 2018. Last year’s team went unbeaten on the way to its sixth national championship, winning 29 games and tying two more.
“He’s a good character kid, ” said UWSP head coach Tyler Krueger. “He’s progressed over the last couple of years and taken the next step in his game in becoming the leader on a successful team. He’s got a lot of intangibles that you can’t teach – he’s got a good hockey mind, loves to compete, and loves to get better and he has a passion for it.”
Roo will join older brother Carter Roo next season, who will be a senior on the Pointers’ roster. TJ Roo finished his college career at Wisconsin-Stevens Point last season, joining the squad after spending three years at NCAA Division I Bemidji State University. The family’s college hockey history runs deep – Jordan’s dad, Jim, played five seasons at Bemidji State and was a teammate of current Beavers head coach Tom Serratore.
“Ever since my brother played there, I visited (the campus) and it’s a good atmosphere with good hockey,” said Jordan Roo. “It’s always been a place that I’ve wanted to go.”
While Carter and TJ played together for two years at Totino-Grace High School in the Twin Cities and again for the Pointers last season, it’s the first chance for Jordan to truly call one of his older brothers a teammate. By the time Jordan was able to begin his prep career for Benilde-St. Margaret’s, Carter was already into his second year in the North American Hockey League with the Aberdeen Wings.
“I’ve been up [to Stevens Point] multiple times to visit,” said Jordan Roo. “Carter and I always went rollerblading at night around the campus, and he showed me where he had classes, so I’m familiar with where everything is.”
The former Red Knights standout is also a product of the North American Prospects Hockey League, playing for the Minnesota Elite Prep Development League’s South squad in the NAPHL as a high school senior.
He is the third North Iowa player to commit to a college this season, after Cam Fagerlee’s commitment to Wisconsin-Stout and Justin Callahan’s commitment to Iowa State.
The North Iowa Bulls congratulate Jordan Roo on his commitment to Wisconsin-Stevens Point, and wish him the best as he continues his academic and athletic career.