“Various students, staff and faculty have inquired about starting an ice hockey team with club sports for a few years,” said Mike Robinson, founder and coach. “After many e-mails, phone calls and visits with club sports we were finally given the green light to start up.”
The club had to jump through some hoops with SGA to become an officially University-sanctioned club.
“We didn’t really know what we were going up against the first time we did it, but this time when we met up with them we pretty much had answers to all of their questions,” said Elliot Chenger, club president. “That, on top of having two staff members from the school who are going to be our advisers, that really helped.”
Buzz about the club has spread to other areas of the state as well.
“I can travel to Montgomery, Columbus, Ga., Birmingham and Huntsville, and people are asking me about the club,” Robinson said. “Once we get our season started and get some more exposure, I’m confident more people will be interested in Auburn hockey.”
The team plans to set up shop in Pelham until the new year-round ice rink is completed in Columbus, Ga.
The Auburn hockey club will take on other SEC ice hockey opponents this season, including Ole Miss, LSU, Mississippi State, UGA and the Alabama Crimson Tide.
The matchup against Alabama will be a three-day series from Jan. 14 to 16 in Pelham on Alabama’s home ice.
“I would go up to Birmingham sometimes and watch Bama play,” said Ryan Proctor, member of the team. “It was a little frustrating to watch a university like Alabama have a hockey team and not us.”
Because of the effort of Robinson and the rest of the team, ice hockey is no longer just a dream for Auburn.