SAN JOSE, Calif. — There was a time — not all that long ago, in fact — when ice dance was considered little more than an excuse to run to the concession stands or check out the vendors on the concourse at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships.

Look what a world title and a couple of Olympic silver medals will do.

With the women still struggling to find a star who can captivate the public like Michelle Kwan and Sasha Cohen once did, ice dance has emerged as the main event at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships. Ice dancers have been responsible for nine of the 15 world and Olympic medals won by Americans since 2006, including Meryl Davis and Charlie White's title at last year's worlds, a first for the United States.