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Tuesday @ The Rink

CHAT LIVE With Boston College Forward Joe Rooney

Welcome to the CSTV.com moderated chat room!

On Tuesday, November 28th at 2:00 p.m. ET, Boston College forward Joe Rooney enters the chatroom at "Tuesday @ The Rink", presented by CSTV.com and USCHO.com. The No. 7 Eagles play a home-and-home series against No. 9 Boston University this weekend, with Friday night's game at BC's Conte Forum televised LIVE on CSTV at 8 p.m. ET.

Joe Rooney

After winning the James E. Tiernan Memorial Award as Boston College's Most Improved Player in 2005-06, Rooney has picked up right where he left off in 2006-07. Rooney, who serves as an assistant captain for the Eagles, currently leads BC in assists with 15 points on five goals and a team-best 10 assists.

Rooney played in all 42 of the Eagles' games last season, registering 18 points on five goals and 13 assists. Rooney did his biggest damage during the NCAA Northeast Regional Final, when he scored two shorthanded goals and added two assists in a 5-0 win over Boston University. Statistically, his best season came as a sophomore in 2004-05, when he had 20 points on four goals and 16 assists. Two of those assists came on game-winning goals by classmate Brian Boyle, including the decisive score in the Hockey East Championship game against New Hampshire. Rooney also earned the team's Bernie Burke Outstanding Freshman Award in 2004 after scoring four goals and adding two assists in his freshman season.

The son of Laura and Steve Rooney - the latter of whom played college hockey at Providence before a seven-year pro career that included stints with the Montreal Canadiens, Winnipeg Jets and New Jersey Devils - Joe is a communication major at BC.

** GET YOUR QUESTIONS IN NOW!!: Joe won't be stopping by until 2:00 p.m. EST on Tuesday, November 28th, 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 to "Tuesday @ the Rink" presented by CSTV.com and USCHO. We're ready to go with our first guest of the day, Boston College forward and assistant captain Joe Rooney.
Joe Rooney: Hi, thanks for having me. I appreciate it.

Andrew (Plymouth, NH): Do you feel the competition in Hockey East this year is greater than in years past, or do you think the league is missing that Superstar player that carries his team and dominates league play such as Chris Drury, Jason Krog, and Brian Gionta just to name a few...?
Joe Rooney: Well, in my experience of playing for four years, I think there's more depth to the league. Usually, every year, it's a challenge playing each team, but even more so this year. Most of the games have been very close with the exception of a few, but I think it'll be a battle to see who comes out on top.

Dan (Boston): You are having your best year by far at BC, what are the main reasons for this sudden burst in offense?
Joe Rooney: I think each year my confidence level has grown. Each year, I've been put in position to play a bigger role for the team. This year, especially with some of the guys we lost last year, me and Brian Boyle felt like we needed to be big leaders for the team and help the team win as much as we can. I've gotten some puck luck too, and I'm playing with two great players in Boyle and Benn Ferriero.

John (Boston): In your years at BC it has been uncommon to be blown out by an opponent. Can you tell us how it feels to already have 3 big losses? How does the team view these and how will you guys move on from them? Thanks.
Joe Rooney: The only real big blowout I see is the Notre Dame game. That one was really tough. We didn't come to play for pretty much all the game. We started making a comeback - we were down four goals, and then we scored a goal - but then we fell apart. The Harvard game was kind of bad - they had a couple of power play goals - but I didn't relaly see that game as a blowout. I didn't really see the UNH game as a blowout either.

Kellie (Boston): BU has been waiting 8 months for this weekend series with BC. How are you guys preparing for the clash with your rivals and how are you going to try and solve John Curry, who has been nothing short of spectacular this year. GO BU!!!!
Joe Rooney: We've had the fortune of a long time off to prepare for BU. Usually we have a game midweek and a game on the weekend, and we have to concentrate on two different opponents. We watched film on BU yesterday, and had a practice based on how BU plays. We're trying to get used to their style, but concentrate on our style too. Curry has been great for two years now, but more than half our team knows what he's like - we played him five or six times last year. We're not really worried about it, we're just going to try to take it to them.

Mike G (Boston): Hey Joe, Just like many years, it seems like BC and BU are very evenly matched. Is there one area of either team that you feel may be the difference when the 2 teams match up this year?
Joe Rooney: We played Wisconsin twice this year, and we felt like BU's defensive zone play is similar to Wisconsin's. They're strong back there, similiar to Wiscon. We talked about how we did a good job of playing our offense against Wisconsin's defense, so we're hoping we can do the same against BU.

Ann Marie- NJ: Joe, Can you tell us a former BC Eagle that you admire or compare your own playing style
Joe Rooney: I guess Brian Gionta. I'm a smaller guy like him, and I try to play like him, but it's hard because he's a great player. I grew up watching him, being around here I came to a lot of games. I remember one goal in particular, a one-handed goal from the top of the circle that went far side, top corner. A real hard shot too. He's kind of a role model who wore the same jersey as me.

Roman (Union, NJ): You're continuing to do good things after last year's strong finish. What made you chose BC originally, and was there any pressure on you to attend Providence since your dad played there?
Joe Rooney: I'm from Boston, so obviously I went to all the Beanpots growing up. I went to a lot of BC games, and also a lot of BU games, but I always liked BC better. When it came down to the decision, I looked at BU a bit, but I loved the BC program in general and the BC campus. I didn't want to go to a school that was right in the city. BC is close enough, so it was an easy decision right from the get go. There wasn't any pressure from Providence with my father. He was pretty happy that BC offered me a scholarship. I made the decision my sophomore year of high school, and he didn't pressure me to wait it out or anything. He was pretty content with the decision.

Bob (Watertown):: Joe - After the early part of the season, how do you feel about this team's chemistry and ability to become a great team?
Joe Rooney: The early part of the season's been a little up and down, but from practicing with the guys every day and being around them, the chemistry's there. We just need to put it into play. I can see this team has potential to be a great team down the line. It's just taking some time to get everyone on the same page, get our systems straight and figure it out together.

Andrew (Holderness, NH): Which Hockey East team is the hardest to play at Home? and Away? ...and how do the crowds at the arenas effect the play of a road team in your on perspective?
Joe Rooney: I guess I 'd say the hardest team to play at home is BU because they bring a big section of their fans who try to cheer louder than our fans do. On the road I would have said BU if they were still at Walter Brown, but now I'd say Maine. Their whole building is filled with fans who heckle you the whole game. It's a tight, small rink, and it's hard to get used to if you're playing there every day like they are. As for how it affects a road team, it's different for different people. Some people might get nervous and listen to the crowd and be affected by it. Other people get a good rush off of it and get excited to play. Me, personally, I get excited to play in front of other teams' crowds when they're heckling you, because if you win it feels good to hear that they're not cheering anymore.

Terry (Worcester):: Joe - How hard has it been for you, Boyle and Brennan to fill the leadership role left by the departure of Harrold, Collins and Gionta?
Joe Rooney: I don't think it's been that hard because last year, there were three seniors, and for me and Brian, we felt like as two upperclassmen, we needed to help those guys out. We've learned from some great captains: Ben Eaves, Ryan Shannon, and Peter Harrold. And there have been some great assistant captains along the way, too, like Andrew Alberts, Chris Collins, Ryan Murphy and Steve Gionta. They all helped me learn how to lead by example or vocally, and be the right leader for the team at the right time. After learing from those guys, it's been any easy transition. There are still challenges in front of us that we have to lead the team through. It'll be fun to try to lead this team back to the tournament.

jim (boston): Joe your former teammates from St. Sebastians Sean Sullivan and Kenny Roche are having a good season for BU.Is it different playing against former teammates, than playing against a team where you don't personally know any of the players?
Joe Rooney: First of all, those two guys are real good players and are having great seasons, and you like seeing that for old friends. I don't think it's difficult. You learn to put friendships aside during the game, then continue them afterwards, especially with BU, where they're playing for a rival team, so there's definitely no friendships during the game.

wingz (Brighton):: Joe - Thanks for the great effort you bring to every shift of every game. How can we get Brian Boyle more involved offensively and is there any thought to having him in front of the net on the power play? Thanks and best of luck the rest of the year.
Joe Rooney: I think he's always involved in the offense. I think I can see that a little bit more because I'm playing with him. Sure, he hasn't been on pace for the same amount of points, but he'll pick that up soon. He'll get some luck and some bounces, and then he'll be right up there. He's always playing hard, he's got a hard shot and he's a good linemate to play with. As far as the power play goes, our percentage isn't unbelievable right now, but our power play has been helping us win games at the right times. When we score a power-play goal, we usually win. We're starting to click on power play with both units, so I don't see us changing anything anytime soon. If he does get put in front of the net, I'm sure he'll do well there, but I don't see anything changing anytime soon.

Mike (Newton): With no games for almost a month in December into January how will the practice schedule go and are you worried at all with this large break from game action.
Joe Rooney: It's a little bit different for us, because we usually have a Christmas tournament that gets us back to school earlier, and back on ice together. It is going to be different, but I'm sure the coaching staff will make sure we're back on track for the next game. We'll have some double sessions and a lot of workouts, and make sure everyone's back in game shape before our first game.

eaglewingz (Chestnut Hill, MA): Joe, What are your thoughts on the new Conte foghorn and how many times do you plan on sounding it this weekend vs. BU? Thanks! eaglewingz
Joe Rooney: I like the foghorn. I've heard it talked about since I've been here. I think our rink was missing something without it, so it was a good addition. As far as this weekend, I don't know how many times I'll make it sound - I hope a couple - but I hope our team makes it sound enough times so that we can win the game.

Joe Rooney 4 Hobey: Joe I just want to say I love your play on the ice and passion for the game. My son walks around the house in his BC jersey pretending he is you!I was wondering what you would recommend to him (age 6) in order to become a top college hockey player like yourself?
Joe Rooney: Well, I'm glad I have at least one fan out there. All I can recommend is to work real hard at it, with lots of practice. Listen to your coaches - no matter what level it is - and just do your best and have fun with it.
CSTV.com Moderator: That is all the time we have with Joe this afternoon.
Joe Rooney: Thanks everyone for posting the questions, and I hope my answers help.
CSTV.com Moderator: That'll do it for the first of our "Tuesday @ the Rink" chats this afternoon. Remember that Friday's BC-BU game will air LIVE on CSTV at 8 p.m. ET. Also, check out the Rink Rat blog at http://slog.cstv.com/rinkrat, as I'll be blogging live from the game with updates after each period.
CSTV.com Moderator: We'll see you at the top of the hour with Colorado College head coach Scott Owens.

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