Grab Your Tylenol

With Wisconsin hockey spending the final week of the WCHA season at home, the Badgers will have their eyes glued to the television to see who they will play to open the conference playoffs. Here are all the possible scenarios and PLEASE ... get the kids away from the computer.

MADISON - With Wisconsin and Alaska-Anchorage finishing all 28 games of its WCHA schedule, the Badgers and SeaWolves will have to wait and see who they will play in the first round of the conference playoffs, starting next weekend.

While Alaska has assured itself of a last-place conference finish, the Badgers can finish either fourth or fifth in the conference and host a first round playoffs series or finish sixth and begin on the road for the second straight season.

Here is what we know for sure ...

1. Colorado College (39 points, 19-6-1 overall)

2. North Dakota (37 points, 18-7-1 overall)

3. Denver (33 points, 16-9-1 overall)

4. Wisconsin (27 points, 11-12-5 overall)

T-5. Minnesota State (26 points, 11-11-4 overall)

T-5. St. Cloud State (26 points, 12-12-2 overall)

7. Minnesota (23 points, 8-11-7 overall)

8. Minnesota Duluth (21 points, 8-13-5 overall)

9. Michigan Tech (20 points, 8-14-4 overall)

10. Alaska Anchorage (12 points, 3-19-6 overall)

Denver will finish as the No.3 seed and Wisconsin will not finish below sixth and will not have to travel to CC, North Dakota, Denver, Alaska, Michigan Tech, Minnesota Duluth or Minnesota.

If Wisconsin finishes in sixth, the Badgers will either travel to St. Cloud or Mankato, Minnesota.

The simplest way for UW to get home ice is for Mankato to get swept at home by Michigan Tech (Mankato was swept when the teams met to open the season) or St. Cloud getting one point or less at North Dakota (the teams split when they met in St. Cloud in January).

The Badgers lose the head-to-head tiebreaker to Mankato (1-2-1 against the Mavericks this season) but hold the tiebreakers against St. Cloud (3-1 against the Huskies this season).

If Minnesota loses at least one point at home to Minnesota Duluth and St. Cloud gets swept, UW is guaranteed home ice, as well.

If St. Cloud earns two points at UND and Mankato takes at least one point from Michigan Tech, Wisconsin will be on the road.

Wisconsin wins the tiebreaker over Minnesota because, even though the two teams are tied head to head (1-1-2), UW has more victories in the WCHA season. The Badgers have 11 and the most Minnesota can get is 10.

The WCHA has an unpublished, somewhat complicated tie breaking format for multiple teams in a tie.

In a nutshell: each team in the scenario is measured on how they played against the others in the equation. Win a series, you are plus one. Split a series, you are even. Lose a series and you are minus one.

If Minnesota State, Wisconsin, St. Cloud State and Minnesota all finish tied for fourth with 27 points, Mankato will get the No.4, UW will be No.5, Minnesota No.6 and St. Cloud No.7

If Minnesota State, Wisconsin and Minnesota all finish tied for fourth with 27 points and St. Cloud finishes with 26 points, Minnesota will be the No.4, MSU will be No.5 and UW will be No.6.

If Minnesota State, Wisconsin and St. Cloud State all finish tied for fourth with 27 points, State will be No.4, Wisconsin will be No.5 and St. Cloud State with be No.6.

If UW does end up with home ice, UW can host either St. Cloud, Minnesota State, Minnesota or Minnesota Duluth (extremely unlikely).

That is every feasible scenario that I could concoct for this weekend, but I am sure you all knew that already.

Now if you don't mind, I need to fix this headache.

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