The TD Garden is home to the Bruins (as well as the Celtics and touring acts like Beyonce), but not on the first two Mondays of February. That's when four college hockey teams take to the ice and battle it out for the prestigious Beanpot. The tournament is a classic and one of the annual highlights of Boston's sports calendar.

Battling for bragging rights since 1952, the Boston University Terriers have dominated and won more than half of the Beanpots, although the Boston College Eagles have been coming on strong over the last few years and won its fourth straight title in 2013. The perennial underdog has been Northeastern University's Huskies, but the team did make it to the championship matchups in 2013 and 2011. Rounding out the roster is the Harvard Crimson. The Ivy Leaguers haven't made it past the first game in the tournament since 2008.

It's always a spirited event with vocal, passionate fans filling the Garden. However, the actual prize, a bean pot, may strike some as a bit odd. (What is it with hockey and championship trophies? The Stanley Cup?) Locals who have followed the event for years probably don't even think about it. It's always been that way, and it's just part of the tradition. But I've often wondered what freshmen attending the schools from outside the area must think when they go to their first tournament. I mean, the big prize is a...bean pot.

The Huskies and Boston College have been looking pretty good thus far this season; B.U. and Harvard: not so much. But the tournament at the Garden will be electric, regardless. With a bean pot on the line, you can be sure the teams will be giving it their all.

2014 Beanpot Tournament
February 3 and 10
TD Garden, Boston
Tickets

Photo: Goterriers.com