By Ann Gill (M.A., ’76)
Fans at CSU men’s basketball games watch the team, band, cheerleaders, and dancers. An integral part of these basketball games, however, is largely invisible—the individuals who sit at a table along the north side of the court behind the possession arrow. Two of them, alumni Craig Shuler (B.S., ’60; M.S., ’66; Ph.D., ’69) and Gordon “Hap” Hazard (B.S., ’77), run the shot clock and score board, respectively, at the games.
These two, along with Tom Holliday, who runs the game clock, have been together at that table for 30 years. Shuler is the senior member; Hazard claims that his partner has been running the shot clock since there was a shot clock. Basketball officials frequently tell this amazing team that they are some of the best they have worked with; Shuler and Hazard attribute 30 years working together as part of the reason.
These long-serving fellows are volunteers, doing this for three decades because they love the Rams. Shuler also runs the play clock for football, and Hazard runs the scoreboard for football, women’s basketball, and volleyball.
Both were involved with sports growing up. Shuler played football, basketball, and tennis in junior high and high school as well as baseball in the summers. He was on the CSU tennis team for three years and served as a high school basketball official in both Maine and Colorado. Hazard was team manager for his high school and kept stats for the games.
After receiving his bachelor’s degree in wood utilization, Shuler served as an aviator in the Marine Corps, then returned to CSU for graduate school while in the Marine Corps Reserves. Upon receiving his doctorate, he joined the faculty at the School of Forest Resources, University of Maine Orono. After ten years, he accepted a faculty position at CSU, which he held until his retirement in 2000. He not only runs the shot and play clocks for the Rams but also sells tickets at Rockies games. He and wife Lorraine (Luck) Shuler (B.M., ’60), a voice major, are active in music productions in Fort Collins and attend events at the University Center for the Arts.
Prior to coming to CSU, Hazard completed a four-year enlistment in the United States Air Force. After graduation, he became night building manager at the Lory Student Center. In 1984, he accepted a position as coordinator for CSU Conference Services. Upon retirement in 2004, he parlayed his interest in history into a volunteer position at the Fort Collins Library historical archives. After the Morgan Library Archives was created, he became a volunteer there. In the first few years, he worked with the extensive photo archives. More recently he has been writing, including co-authoring CSU’s Sense of Place: A Campus History of Colorado’s Land Grant University, published in 2018.
This pair has given much to Ram fans and CSU Athletics over the decades. As for being invisible, they explain “We have done our jobs well if no one noticed we were there.”