Jake Sanderson's resume is impressive.
The North Dakota incoming freshman captained the U.S. Under-18 Team. He led the team in defenseman scoring with 29 points. He won MVP at the BioSteel All-American Game. He has moved up NHL Draft boards and is a contender to go in the top 10 overall.
In the meantime, he accelerated his education, finishing three years of school in the past two calendar years, to graduate early so he can attend UND in the fall.
All of that added up to yet another honor: Sanderson won USA Hockey's Dave Tyler Junior Player of the Year Award, the organization announced Thursday.
He is the fifth UND player to win it.
The others are Tucker Poolman in 2013-14, Chris Fournier in 2000-01, Karl Goehring in 1996-97 and Jason Blake in 1993-94. Poolman, Goehring and Blake went on to play key roles on NCAA national championship teams at UND.
"Obviously, he's gotten a lot of attention through the last two years at the National Program, pre-Draft, and now this accolade," UND coach Brad Berry said. "It's outstanding. It's a true testament to his body of work the last year, for sure."
Sanderson, whose defensive coach the last two seasons has been Grand Forks native Nick Fohr, can do a little bit of everything.
He's known for being an outstanding skater and defender, but he also played on the power play for the U.S. Under-18 Team and has the ability to distribute the puck effectively. His coaches say he's an excellent leader as well.
Although UND has a strong returning defensive core, led by senior-to-be Matt Kiersted and first-round NHL draft pick Jacob Bernard-Docker, the Fighting Hawks coaching staff thinks Sanderson can step in and provide an immediate impact.
"We believe so," Berry said. "I think it's one of those things where any time a first-year player comes into our program, they have to earn it on and off the ice to warrant the ice time. Going back to previous players that have come here at that level, they've come here right away and played a significant role -- the Tyson Josts, Brock Boesers, Zach Parises, Jonathan Toews-type players. They've made an impact.
"Is there a transition from the level they've played at to the NCHC? Absolutely there is. But it seems like those high-end players don't take too long to get acclimated to the level we're at here."
Lisa Vollmers, the director of student-athlete services for the NTDP, said that Sanderson was a leader on and off the ice.
"If I need to get a message to the team right away, I can text Jake and he would have the text out in no time," Vollmers told USA Hockey's website. "He’s truly an amazing kid who works incredibly hard. He’s mature beyond his years and he holds himself in a very responsible, respectful manner. He’s an all-around great kid to work with and it’s just been a pleasure to have him at the program for the past two years."
Berry said he's eager for Sanderson to get on campus.
"We're really excited about getting him in our group here," Berry said. "He's going to go through the NHL Draft, but we're excited about getting him sometime here this summer and getting him embedded into our group and taking the next step in his career."