I would never count Red out over the second half of the year. Getting Merrill back is probably going to change your team drastically. He is a game changer. I didn't see much of the Tech game - but the 3rd period against us shows me that you guys are certainly capable of doing it.
Now, I know your schedule doesn't help - and one day you're going to have to explain how Michigan would allow the CCHA to send the hockey team on the road during prime time for hockey - I would think someone in your athletic office would complain about that, unless Yost is being used for something else. Don't you play something like 9 of 10 away from Yost (not sure the Joe counts though)? That's harsh - even for a computer spitting a schedule out. I could say the same thing about MSU over the first half of the year.
You probably will still need to go on a run in the CCHA tournament, but I wouldn't count you guys out just yet.
Push comes to shove - just play Merrill 60 minutes a game.