Varsity hockey coach Cooney Welland last night proposed that a play-off be held among the four top eastern collegiate hockey teams, the winner of which would represent the East in the N.C.A.A. tournament.
Welland's proposal came after Eddie Jeremiah, Dartmouth's hockey coach, called the N.C.A.A. hockey championship a "Frankenstein" which should be "junked." He felt the tournament, usually held at Colorado Springs, Col., was no longer a national or U.S. championship because of the domination of Canadian hockey talent.
The Crimson coach disagreed that the presence of Canadian players on American teams was grounds for discontinuing the tournament. "How can we hope to dominate some country that's made hockey their national game like baseball's ours?" Welland said.
"I do think the tournament has become a bit ludicrous, I mean by that overemphasized, but it's a lot sounder than having a national board select the best American team."
Welland was referring to Jeremiah's suggestion for establishing a national rating board which would pick the champion American sextet on the basis of its season's record.
The Crimson sextet ranked third behind Clarkson and St. Lawrence after Tuesday's poll of New England hockey writers. The team moved up from fifth to third place during the past week. Behind Harvard stand Boston College, Yale, Tufts, R.P.I., Princeton, Boston University, Norwich, and Providence, in that order.
As a preliminary step toward improving the tournament, the Crimson coach advocated a play-off between teams from northern New York State, like R.P.I., Clarkson, and St. Lawrence, and the winner of the Ivy League or the New England Hockey League. Such a play-off would eliminate the need for an N.C.A.A. board to select "arbitrarily" the best Eastern team for national competition