Updated: November 22, 2013 at 3:23 am
His name may not show up on the individual stats often but that does not reflect how much center Jeff Collett contributes to the Colorado College hockey team.
The senior from Calgary, Alberta, is a leader and calming presence for the less-experienced players on the Tigers' 12th-ranked penalty kill (86.5 percent).
"Collett is really dialed in on what we are trying to do as a penalty-kill unit," CC assistant Eric Rud said. "He helps bring along the younger players and shows them where they need to be within the system. He has a quiet steadiness."
It was midway through his junior season that Collett assumed a larger role on the PK, which helped fuel a postseason run last spring.
His experience is one reason why the penalty kill is one of the strengths of the Tigers (1-7-1, 1-4-1 league).
They resume National Collegiate Hockey Conference play at No. 2 St. Cloud State (8-1-1, 3-1) this weekend.
Collett has 27 career points (17 assists) through nine games this campaign. He played in all 42 games last season, mostly on the penalty kill and as a fourth-line center.
"Collett does not get the points, but he is an important piece," Tigers coach Scott Owens said. "He draws assignments against a lot of the top lines and he is partnered with the less-experienced penalty-killers like (Scott) Wamsganz, (Peter) Maric and (Archie) Skalbeck."
And now as an assistant captain, Collett is passing on the pointers he learned from former Tigers and giving his partners tips to adjust to opponents' tendencies and better disrupt their power play.
"Even one or two feet this way or that helps," Collett said.
It fits his skill set well, Skalbeck said.
"He is just a good all-around hockey player," Skalbeck said. "You can tell he's a smart player. He's a leader who puts the team ahead of himself by blocking shots."
Assuming a less-glamorous role is how the underclassman Collett knew he would earn ice time.
"During my freshman and sophomore years, the coaches gave me some reps in practice and when the older PKers left I knew I would have a chance to contribute that way," he said.
He worked hard to learn the system and the Tigers know they benefit.
"He is respected and well-liked by his teammates," Owens said. "He has a letter on his jersey for a reason."