Nov. 9, 2004
This week's featured athlete is men's ice hockey senior defenseman John Adams. Adams is one of 10 seniors on this year's squad.
Q: College hockey maintains the longest season of any (college) sport. How do you stay motivated and focused from the start of the season in early October until early April?
A: Well, that's easy. All these guys at BC love playing hockey so much. They recruit the best guys in the country. These are just kids who love coming to the rink and doing it every day. I mean, it doesn't stop after April. Our offseason is just as demanding as our season. Everything is in anticipation of the regular season. Once it comes, you're just so excited because you've been lifting weights all summer.
Q: Talk about the team's defensive unit - with the mix of veterans and newcomers.
A: It's been good. As soon as Andrew Alberts gets back, we can really establish ourselves as the best defensive corps in the country. Michael Brennan has had an impact right away. He's a very good player. I think Taylor Leahy has been versatile being able to play forward and then step back and fill in for Andrew Alberts on defense. Brian O'Hanley has done a really good job on the power play, real good offensive skills there. And what can you say about Peter Harrold? He's one of the premier defensemen in the nation, for sure.
Q: (Defensemen) Mike Brennan and Brian O'Hanley have stepped right in and earned ice time. How difficult is the adjustment to the college game and what impresses you most about each of them?
A: It's a huge adjustment in terms of defense, especially. O'Hanley has come from prep school and that part has been the biggest jump for him. He's learning every day and we`re all learning but he's getting better. Mike Brennan came from the national program which really develops players. It gives them a step up because he has played a year in the USHL, so he's played against college teams and junior teams. I think he's got an edge up on some of the other true freshmen that have come in.
Q: Through the season's first five games, Coach York has alternated the team's top two goalies - Matti Kaltiainen and Cory Schneider. Does the team play any differently depending on who is in goal?
A: No, not at all. We got the two twin towers with the 6-foot-3 redheads. It's been going well, and they've both been playing well.
Q: What advice (if any) have you offered your freshman teammates?
A: I just stick with the "buy into the team" concept. You stick with the older guys. We've got a big senior class with 10 guys and I think the freshmen as a whole have really gelled with the senior class pretty well. As a senior class, we've been through a lot in the last three years. If they just stick around us and stay within the confines of the team, they will be all right.
Q: What do you like most about playing for Jerry York?
A: He's awesome. He's unbelievable. He takes on the role of a father. That's really special, and you don't see that at too many other places. He has had us over to his house and he and his wife makes us feel so welcome. I mean, how much better does it get than that? I think that is a pretty special part of playing hockey at Boston College, for sure.
Q: You have been a part of many terrific games over the past three years. Are there any plays or games that stand out in your mind?
A: I'd have to say Ryan Murphy's Beanpot goal [last season] and Ben Eaves' overtime goal against Michigan [last March] where he was fighting through cramps. That was pretty exciting stuff.
Q: Talk about what it's like to have your brother (Joe) on the team this season.
A: Oh, it's great. My senior year, for him to be there just always hanging out is a really neat deal for me and our family, especially. My parents can come out and see us both. He's just as much a part of the team as anyone else. Yeah, it has been a lot of fun.
Q: Are there any teams or players you're most excited to face?
A: Maine, definitely, which we played last weekend. They are the one team that sticks out in your mind after last year. They take it from you in the FleetCenter in the Frozen Four. Obviously, BU is exciting all the time because it's such a strong, fierce rivalry. We like playing the top teams, but I would say Maine, mainly, because of what happened last year. It was a bitter ending there last year.
Q: What arenas do you most look forward to playing in - whether it be because of the ice, the atmosphere or any other reason?
A: I definitely love playing at Walter Brown Arena at BU. The crowd is pretty nuts. Up in Maine, too, the fans are nuts, and it's a real old-school, old-time hockey type atmosphere. UNH is a riot, too. They've got the new rink, where they pump the music, and the crowd gets into it. It's definitely a blast up there.
Q: Over the years, the State of Minnesota has provided Boston College with many outstanding players - from Tim Sheehy and Gary Sampson decades ago to Michael Spalla and all the recent Minnesotans. With so many good options closer to home, what's the lure of Boston College? What drew you here?
A: I took a visit here not knowing what to expect. You leave and you just feel the family atmosphere among the players. The whole school is just so comforting. I would say it's the best athletic and academic combination of any school in the country. You are competing for national championships every year, and it's just a great place to get an education.
Q: Do you spend a lot of time away from the arena with your teammates?
A: We eat, sleep, and breathe together all the time. We go to practice and then we lift weights. Then, we'll walk over to dinner, and then we walk back to the dorms. We'll be doing homework or watching TV. You're always with at least a couple of guys on the team. We're a pretty close group and get along really well.
In a special edition later this week, the Athletics Department will feature women's soccer forward and senior co-captain Laina Ceddia. Ceddia and the women's soccer team face Florida State in the first round of the NCAA Division I Tournament this Friday.