A native of Rochester, Mich., defenseman Jacob Trouba desired to play in front of family and friends, and ultimately Michigan gave him that opportunity far better than Notre Dame. On Monday night, the USA Hockey blue liner chose the Maize and Blue ...
"Location was a big thing," he said. "And there is nothing more you can ask for out of a school, a hockey team, than what you get at Michigan, with their coaching and their facilities. You're never going to want to leave with everything you have right there."
Trouba's father, John, played basketball at University of Michigan-Dearborn and so the hockey player grew up with a U-M presence, but choosing to wear the winged helmet was not a slam dunk.
"Growing up that's who we rooted for but I never had a real strong allegiance to any one school," he said. "So that's what made it a harder decision - not having a school I grew up aspiring to go to. But with everything Michigan offers, it's a great school to be at.
"The defensemen they've had in the past have always made it to the next level and that's where I want to be someday. It's nothing against Notre Dame and Coach [Jeff] Jackson. It's a great school too, and great coaching, and I wish them the best, but just the way Michigan handles their defensemen - they give them the freedom to jump up into the play and be aggressive. That's how I play."
The 6-2, 191-pounder had three goals and four assists in 31 games with the U.S. Under-17 team in 2010-11. Though not known for his offense, he is capable of putting the puck in the net. Trouba is know, however, for his physicality.
"That's a big part of my game - being physical. I like to hit people," he said. "I play big because it opens up space for me.
"I can be offensive at times, but I also play a real physical, defensive defenseman game too."
Trouba is a potential first-round draft pick in 2012, and while the NHL Draft is a way off, he remains a coveted OHL prospect too. Trouba, though, is content with where he's headed.
"I'm committed to Michigan. That's where I'm focused. I have no intention of going to the OHL," he said.