Instead, Calgary's 2012 first round pick will be back on campus at Providence College, making his way to class with his backpack slung over his shoulder.
But he sure wanted to make that return visit.
Following the lead of Johnny Gaudreau last year, who left Boston College after three years, and his Friars teammate Jon Gillies, who turned pro this summer after three years of college, Jankowski also looked into bypassing his final year and turning pro.
Broaching the Question: Is it Time?
"After the season, we had a few conversations about how the year went, how I felt I progressed as the season went on, what did I want to do for next year and what they think would be best," Jankowski said.
The discussions involved Calgary GM Brad Treliving and his management team as well as Jankowski's adviser and his family.
"We had good talks and in the end, they thought it was best for me to come back for my senior year, get my degree and just try and have that full year where we've got the target on our back," Jankowski said. "I think it's going to be a good challenge for us and for me personally and I'm really looking forward to it."
"A little bit more development and being the No. 1 guy there (key forwards not returning include Noel Acciari and Ross Mauermann) and me just being able to play in all roles and all situations, it's going to be really good for my development."
It does seem like a wise decision. While he turns 21 in September and although 19 of the 20 players chosen ahead of him have already made their NHL debut, he's still young. Heck, with the acne on his face, he looks more like 16.
Appreciative of the Support
Reflecting on a National Championship
"Our coach was trying to get us to focus on the game like it's just another game, but then you get there and it's hard to think it's just another game, because it's the huge spectacle," said Jankowski. "You have a full day of interviews. There is tons of TV, newspaper, radio, ESPN -- (John) Buccigross and (Barry) Melrose are there, and all that stuff. You have to get those out of the way the first few days so then when game time comes around, it's business."
Icing on the cake was being named to the NCAA Frozen Four's All-Tournament team. Also on that team? Jack Eichel.
"A great personal achievement but the ultimate goal was that national championship."
After going 13-12-25 in 39 games in year two, his offensive production last year was 8-19-27 in 37 games. Five less goals, two more points, basically a wash to the uneducated eye.
Jankowski sees 2014-15 in a much different light.
"It was another year, where I got better as the year went on and that's the most important thing," Jankowski said. "I played my best hockey at the end when the games meant the most. In the tournament and the Frozen Four, scored a couple big goals and played a good overall game."
Longtime coach Nate Leaman preaches strong defensive play at PC and this was an area Jankowski says he's grown in.
"The main thing is trying to play a good overall game. Start from the d-zone, work out into the neutral zone and the o-zone. That's one part of my game over the last three years that has really developed," Jankowski said. "I pride myself on being good defensively and being someone that my coach can rely in every situation, down by a goal late in the game, up by a goal trying to protect the lead, penalty kill, power play, everything."
Stellar at the Dot
Face-offs is another area of strength for Jankowski.
"It's something I get better at every year. Our coaching staff takes big pride in our face-offs. All four of our centres did well in face-offs and we were all near the top of the league," he said.
The best of the best was Jankowski, who topped the team and ranked second in all of Hockey East at 58.1 percent.
Considering the Flames finished 26th in that category at 47.4 percent last season, that number sure is a sight for sore eyes.
"It's something that I'm pretty good at and it's something I take pride in. Down by a goal late in the game, if there's a face-off, our coach can rely on me doing that or with a few seconds left in our zone, he can rely on me to win a big face-off," he said. "Even on the power play. Every pp starts in the o-zone now so if you lose that draw and they shoot it down the ice, that's 20 seconds off the clock. Face-offs are a big part of the game."
He may not have nearly the same cachet as a guy like Gaudreau -- and you'll recall the 'will he or won't he sign?' angst that hovered around him for so long. But still, waiting until August 15 next summer and becoming a free agent is an option open to him just like how Kevin Hayes walked away from the Chicago Blackhawks last summer.
However, you just can't see that happening as the sincere Jankowski has always had nothing but good things to say about the Flames.
"I couldn't be any happier to be in Calgary. It's a great organization and a great city and I'm glad to be here," he said as his fourth development camp got going.
As for fears about how long he's taking to develop, that was always going to be the case if you remember back to comments made by Flames management on draft day when assistant GM John Weisbrod declared him the second coming of Joe Nieuwendyk.
There's no certainties he will be an NHL player but if you look at where he's at, the success his team has had and the integral role he played in that success, there's also no certainties he won't make it to the NHL either.
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