Tuesday, August 08, 2006

God Does Not Play Dice

Faced with the ongoing offseason struggle to find a topic to write about I had a nice idea last week when I was busier with email than I usually like to be. I was visiting Chris Heisenberg's Recruit Listing and while pondering what a great resource it is I remember that I'd always meant to send him an email saying how awesome the listing is. I'm no longer much of an email fan: Don't get me wrong, email has it uses and I used to constantly be sending messages to this friend or that but over the years it's grown to feel more like paying bills than communicating to me. I flipped over the email tab and sent Chris the following message:
Dear Chris,
I've meant to send this any number of times so please forgive the tardiness. I want to simply say thank you with great appreciation and admiration for the all the work you must do to keep your recruit listings up to date. I first found your list through the USCHO board's back around 99 or so and time and time again have found the wealth of information you provide to the College Hockey community invaluable. If there were a College Hockey Fan Hall of Fame I think you'd be the first inductee.

I remember many a time pulling up your listing and pouring over the lists to be both inspired and educated. More than once I've found myself ingesting your information over and over with the result being some new insight or knowledge that quite simply wouldn't have been possible without all your work. I can't speak for every fan that peruses your pages but anyone that doesn't find your information extremely valuable should probably be locked up.

If it isn't an imposition I'd like to ask a few questions of you so that I might profile you on my blog. I understand in advance if you are reticent in any way ... so no worries if you'd rather not.
I wanted to make sure he understood how valuable his efforts are to the hockey community but killing two birds with one stone is never a bad thing. I crossed my fingers that he'd respond because I'v got nothing else to write about this week. So when I checked my email account tonight I was happy to find his response. Below are my questions with his answers.
1. When did you first publish your recruit listing and what prompted you to take on that gargantuan task?
I first did it in 95 when I got on the web, and found USA Today listing the hockey early signings. That opened up my listing of who had committed. Once junior leagues started posting info, I was able to get a better handle of who was a top player but not yet committed. From there, it grew, and being first gets me more connections than others. Not any real magic, other than that junior coaches and parents know my site more than others, and so pass along more info. And several devoted college fans have inside info on their programs that they pass along.

2. About how many hours a week to you devote to maintaining the lists?
Too much, if you ask my wife.

3. Where does the bulk of your information come from? Do you just rely on announcements from Jr. teams regarding committments or do you have to search them out? Are you organized to "the nines"? Or do you just have a phalanx of denizens that are in the know and send you lots of email? How many folders are in your browsers Bookmark menu? In other words ... How the hell do you do it all man?
A pretty good network of junior coaches who more and more want the pr for having developed a scholarship player. For junior teams, they obviously want to promote their kids, so some do provide me a pre-season listing of players to watch. Of course, the USA festivals give me a sense of what American kids are up and coming.

4. Which D-1 team(s) do you follow most closely?
UNH. Graduated from there and was the student hockey reporter all four years 83-87.

5. Do you get tired of "uncertainty principle" jokes?
I do get them a lot, but not enough to get tired of them.

6. Do you have a USCHO username and more importantly have I ever flamed you?
No, although I do keep track of the board, as it often is the best early tickler system.

7. East or West?
Root for the east, but I guess that's like rooting for a National League team vs. the American League.

8. Will you be the last AOL user before they turn out the lights?
For no good reason other than that I've had too much difficulty getting high speed access to my house. If I had that, AOL would be gone so fast. ;)
I'm happy that Chris hasn't ever had to personally endure any of my antics on USCHO. And I'm hopeful his wife has some understanding that without his contribution there'd be tons of stupid D-1 hockey fans walking around like zombies from a bad horror movie in a Wisconsin mall. And I did my best to come up with something original regarding the whole "Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle" but the position and velocity of my thoughts at any particular point in time is indeterminable.


du78 said...

Good job on the interview with Chris. His site is one of the best for us college hockey aficiandos. BTW I also enjoy your blog and read it all the time. Keep up the good work.

ItsGood2BTheKing said...

Great article DTP. Your blog is one of the more interesting college hockey blogs out there.

Donald said...

Thanks guys. Since I'm not a janitor at UAA's sports center privy to all sorts of details about the team, I guess I just have to try harder to come up with something interesting to read.

Anonymous said...

Getting closer to Steve Cobb being let go at UAA.

Donald said...

Anon @ 4:32;
You might think that your persistent trolling about Cobb is accomplishing something. It isn't; unless you consider making yourself look like a bitter ass is an accomplishment.

If you had something useful to say about Cobb I'd invite you to email me your information or perspective. But at this point it's become clear that you really have no information to back your "Bash Cobb" agenda.

Is there really any point in continuing these comments here?

Anonymous said...

Great interview. Do you realize that Werner Heisenberg was Chris's grandfather?

Donald said...

Anon @ 8:56
Yes I did know that. But I thought I'd limit the references or questions about that just for courtesy's sake.

The title of the post is what Einsteins said in "response" to the Heisenberg Principle and my marginal little joke at the end was a sort of restating of the principle.

Runninwiththedogs said...


I'm an engi-nerd, god help me.

Anonymous said...

Good job with Heis. The most lucid part of this entry:

"...the position and velocity of my thoughts at any particular point in time is indeterminable."

BTW, shouldn't it be "Deity Does Not Play Dice"? Just figured you should be a little more "consistent" between forums.

Donald said...

Anon @ 3:05
Einstein's words not mine. ;-)

Not to mention that ... "Mythological Supernatural Beings" probably do play dice anyway.

I strive for ONE lucid moment in each post.

Runninwiththedogs said...

Those dice are probably 20-sided.

Anonymous said...

Very good interview DTP!! :o)

The Chancellor for UAA was a guest on AM-1080, on a local talk show they have in the mornings here.

They wanted people to call in with ANY questions they had regarding UAA.

I was in my car and freaked out when I realized that I had forgotten my cell phone. I wasn't in a good location to stop & try to find a pay phone so I missed out.

Anyway. I would've asked him if any plans really are in the works to eventually put an arena on campus. (A real arena --- It's funny how many people I talk to about this who say "UAA already has an ice arena!!") LOL!! I know that. I mean an 8k+ seater.

Not sure I would've had the nerve to come out and ask him about anonymous' allegations about Cobb though. Nah, probably wouldn't do that. :o/

BTW: Another former UAA signs with the Alaska Aces today! Jimmy Dahl, "the CHL player of the year"! (JJ signed too, but he was already with them ;o)


When is this rain gonna stop DTP?


Donald said...

When did it start raining? I've seen nothing but a perfect summer.

Sunshine and 75 all day.

Anonymous said...

Um, the Chancellor at UAA is a woman, not a man....so I'm not sure who you heard on the radio but it was not the Chancellor.

Anonymous said...

Umm---- Whatever.

It was Steve Lindbeck. Vice Chancellor.

He talked a LOT about the new Science Center and asked callers to phone in with questions on that new center, as well as any other new projects in UAA's future.

So I promoted Mr. Lindbeck -- So sue me.

Larissa ;-)

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