I've always heard the same thing, but searching around on the internet I found the following from ROBERT WATERS Wildlife Biologist USDA Soil Conservation Service:
Acorn production varies from year to year and from species to species. For example, white oak may produce a bumper crop of acorns one year; and black jack may produce practically none. The next year black jack may have a bumper crop and white oak may produce none. However, generally an individual oak, regardless of species, that produces a good crop of acorns one year also produces a good crop every year that is productive for that species. In other words, some individual trees are better producers of acorns than are other trees of that species.
I also found this from CThttp://dep.state.ct.us/burnatr/wildlife ... s/mast.htm
White oaks produce a very palatable, sweet mast every year and red oaks produce a bitter mast crop every other year. White oak acorns, because of their palatability, generally do not last through the winter, while red oak acorns remain available, providing a food supply during critical periods of scarce food.
And then an Illinois museum stateshttp://www.museum.state.il.us/exhibits/ ... /tree.html
White oaks begin to produce acorns when they are about twenty years old. The acorns are about 2.5 centimeters (1 in.) long. Acorns are produced in the Fall, and the number of acorns varies from year to year. Large numbers of acorns are produced every four to ten years. When the acorns fall to the ground, they are an important food for many kinds of birds and mammals.
And last but not least the Federal Database of plants & trees says thishttp://www.fs.fed.us/database/feis/plan ... stics.html
White oak produces good acorn crops at erratic intervals. Good
crops have been reported at 4- to 10-year  and at 3- to 5-year
So, I have statements that say 1) Every Year 2) Every Couple Years, and 3) Every 4-10 year intervals.... I dont know which to believe ? Perhaps its each tree is unique ?
Sounds interesting enough for me to look around some more tomorrow.