April 12, 2008
Sharks blueliner finds Swede way to tap into kegs
By RANDY SPORTAK, SUN MEDIA
Douglas Murray's invention doesn't have huge cashflow, but he's tapped into college kids' hearts.
While at Cornell University, the San Jose Sharks defenceman and some friends came up with the UberTap, a quick spout for beer kegs.
Surely it must have him drowning in success.
"Not right now," he said. "But we're making some kids happier."
Murray may be known for patrolling the blueline for the Sharks as they face the Flames in their opening-round playoff series, but sports fans of all ilk must appreciate what he and friends came up with in between their scholastic and sporting endeavours in their college days.
UberTap is a system that uses a foot pump to extract the liquid gold, and three spouts to fill the glasses.
Imagine that. Three glasses being filled simultaneously.
To borrow phrase sudsy connoisseurs know -- brilliant.
"It took too long to get beer in college. It's about five times as fast to fill up," Murray said. "Since I've been in the NHL, I haven't been involved as much, my partner is running it. When I was in the minors, there was more time."
So much for the thought Murray was just another hulking defenceman.
Actually, that tidbit is just the tip of the iceberg with him.
He's actually Swedish -- his father's family came from Scotland in the 1730s, so that explains the Anglicized names. His brothers are named Ted, Charles and his sister is Roseanna.
"All my relatives and cousins have Swedish names, but my parents wanted their kids to have English names, which is different when you live back in Sweden," Murray said.
"But when you live over here, nobody believes you're Swedish."
Murray left home to play junior and high school hockey in New York state, living with relatives on Long Island, because he figured it would be a fun experience for one year.
Instead of returning home, he received a scholarship at Cornell, and became a two-time first-team all-American and team captain. He's also rung the bell at the New York Mercantile Exchange in the summer of 2006.
"I had a friend working there, a relative," he recalled. "They heard his cousin was a NHL player, went to Cornell, and thought it would be fun."
Murray has rung a few bells on the NHL ice.
The 6-ft.-4, 245-lb. behemoth is also among the most active players in the NHL for fights.
Take that Don Cherry.\