Tuesday @ The Rink

CHAT LIVE With Colorado Head Coach Scott Owens

Welcome to the CSTV.com moderated chat room!

On Tuesday, October 23 at 2:00 p.m. ET, Colorado College Head Coach Scott Owens enters the chatroom at "Tuesday @ The Rink", presented by CSTV.com and USCHO.com. The Tigers travel to New Hampshire for a two-game series on October 26-27.

Scott Owens

Now in his ninth season as head coach at Colorado College, Scott Owens already has reserved a special niche in the annals of Tiger Hockey, having won more games than any of his 12 predecessors in the program's 67-year history.

His teams have averaged more than 24 victories per year since he accepted the position. The 31 triumphs in 2004-05 represents the program's second highest total ever. It's no mere coincidence that the Tigers have kept a firm foothold among college hockey's elite, while attendance figures at the Colorado Springs World Arena continue to rank among the nation's best.

A 1979 graduate with a bachelor's degree in business administration, Owens lettered for four seasons as a goaltender with the Tigers. He later spent four campaigns (1991-95) as a member of the Colorado College coaching staff, serving as recruiting coordinator and playing a key role in the program's revival in the mid '90s. He was promoted to associate head coach for the final two years of that stay. Before leaving to become head coach and general manager of the Des Moines Buccaneers in 1995, he had helped lead CC to its first of five consecutive appearances in the NCAA playoffs as well as two of three straight regular-season championships in the WCHA.

The 48-year-old Owens, who coached the South at '86 and '87 U.S. Olympic Festivals, also spent five years as a player, assistant coach and youth program coordinator for the Kempten Ice Hockey Club in Kempten, West Germany, after graduating from CC in 1979. He and his wife, Sally, were married on New Year's Eve, 2001. He has two step-sons, Evan and Sean, ages 21 and 18.

** GET YOUR QUESTIONS IN NOW!!: Scott won't be stopping by until 2:00 p.m. ET on Tuesday, October 23rd, and his time will be limited, so feel free to submit your questions now and we'll save them for his arrival!
CSTV.com Moderator: Welcome back to "Tuesday @ the Rink." We're joined now by Colorado College head coach Scott Owens.
Coach Owens: It's nice to be with you here this afternoon, and I look forward to answering your questions as best I can.

Jonathan (Lafayette Hill, PA): First, great job getting your hockey club focused to sweep Minnesota this past weekend. This year your schedule seems to be "front end loaded" with tough games. Is that by design ? How much input do you have regarding scheduling? Any chance we can see a CC / Northeastern game on the schedule in coming years ?
Coach Owens: It is somewhat of a front-end loaded schedule this year. We don't have a lot of say in the league schedule part. We're returning a series to New Hampshire, and it just happens to coincide with Minnesota at home, Duluth at home and Wisconsin at home. As it turns out, it's a good thing, as we host the West Regional, and strength of schedule becomes important. As far as Northeastern goes, there's a pretty good possibility we're playing them in 2009-10 in the Springs.

Glenn, Bend, Oregon: I went to CC ('74), my daughter (& wife attended) New Hampshire. Who should I root for (to preserve family)? I have CC tickets the first night & UNH the second.
Coach Owens: Given that circumstance, you've got to go with the black and gold. Wear your black and gold proudly!

Fred (Colorado Springs): Is there any doubt among the coaching staff who will be the starting netminder against the Wildcats this weekend or are you letting performance in practice from week to week dictate who gets the nod?
Coach Owens: I would say that there's no doubt Richard Bachman had a great weekend against the Gophers, but it's only mid-October, and it's a long season, and we'll probably utilize Richard and Drew O'Connell in the early phase of our season. No decision has been made on the weekend yet, however.

Chris - Colorado Springs: Coach Owens - Congrats on a great weekend! The decision to start a freshman (Bachman) over an upperclassman had to be tough. How did the team respond initially?
Coach Owens: It was a tough decision, and it was a tough decision to go on back-to-back nights with a freshman goaltender, but the team responded well. They were supportive of what the coaching staff felt.

Rob (Minneapolis): I understand that your leading scorer from last year, Jimmy Kilpatrick, has been working extremely hard to recover from his off-season surgery and come back earlier than originally expected. How soon is he expected to play now and where do you envision him fitting into the lineup and fitting into the strategy going forward?
Coach Owens: We expect to have Jimmy back very soon. He has rehabbed tremendously hard. Not only is he a key offensive player for us, but he's one of our captains.

Manitou Manny(Manitou Spgs): Way to go against the Golden Gophers. Why is Denver so bad and we're so good.
Coach Owens: Both teams are off to good starts. Denver's played impressively in their first four games, especially defensively. Obviously, we had a great first weekend. With Air Force sweeping Quinnipiac, it's a good time to be a college hockey fan on the Front Range.

John (LA): The WCHA has already had 9 of its 10 teams ranked in the top 20 this year. With each and every team getting such exceptional talent, how have you seen coaching and your role as a coach change over your tenure?
Coach Owens: I think, first of all, you have to be more concerned with depth on your team than ever before. The uncertainty of how long you'll have players makes it imperative that you've got all your bases covered. I also think that the players are younger, and there's more coaching involved and teaching involved. It's really important that you create a sense of team right in the beginning, that'll hopefully carry you through. I will say this: you have to be prepared every weekend, whomever you're playing in the league, because there's no nights off. You can't take a night off.

Ed (Salem, N.H.): How much does last season's series against UNH affect the team's mindset?
Coach Owens: They took it to us pretty good, and we remember that, but it's a new season with new players, and we don't dwell on it. I know our team has a tremendous amount of respect for the Wildcats, and we look forward to an exciting weekend.

Terry: Early in the season, you were surprised at how high your team was ranked. What surprised you this weekend?
Coach Owens: I was surprised that we were ranked so high because of our inexperience in goal and on the blueline, but based on last weekend's play - and granted, it was just one weekend - our defensive corps and goaltender played much beyond their years, and I think that was the most pleasant surprise. But, there's still a lot to be seen yet.

Alex Moody (Boston, Massachusetts): Please pass along to Coach Owens! - Thanks. I just wanted to wish my old coach (from our USHL days in Madison, WI) the very best of luck this season. Scott Owens is a class act, both on and off the ice, and all of his players are very fortunate to have him as a mentor. Hey coach, you would be happy to know that I just beat cancer! Thanks for that memorable year playing for the Caps in 89-90. Your former goaltender and Colby graduate, Alex Moody
Coach Owens: Alex, great hearing from you. It doesn't surprise me one bit you beat cancer. You were a battler and competitive as hell every day, and I wish you well. Thanks for the note.
CSTV.com Moderator: That is all we have with Coach Owens this afternoon.
Coach Owens: Thanks to everyone who sent in questions. We're excited for the challenge of playing UNH this weekend. Looking forward to our eastern swing, and I appreciate everybody's time.
CSTV.com Moderator: That will do it for another week of "Tuesday @ the Rink" chats, presented by CSTV.com and USCHO. Be sure to check back for information on next week's guests. Thanks for being part of the chats today, and have a great week!