Joe Kile
6 min readOct 21, 2020


I’ll keep this short; I think. My name is Joe Kile, I’m from Troy, MI and I play hockey at SUNY Plattsburgh. Anyways..

Photo creds: Dakota Gilbert @northeastdakota

COVID has controlled our lives since March. Things change every day. By now, I think everyone is used to that. Every athlete in the SUNYAC came to their respected campuses this fall with a small amount of hope. For the majority of us, our sport is the only reason we are at these schools. We came to campus and had very little information on our hockey seasons. It was just two weeks ago when we were given a schedule. The proposed schedule was 8 games long starting in February. Finally, we had something to look forward to. At the time, I mean yeah sure we were all pretty pissed about an 8-game season. Boy was I wrong. I should have been thrilled about that. But nope, yesterday, whoever is in charge just randomly decided to cancel the whole entire season. 4 months prior to the season starting none the less. We get it, times are crazy right now. But really? Cancel the whole season? But don’t worry, we all get an extra year of eligibility. If everything stays how it is right now, for all of us, it’ll be 21 months between our last game and our next. 21 MONTHS. I’ve hardly gone 21 seconds without thinking about hockey the past 6 months.

I’m not here to bad mouth SUNY by any means. At the end of the day I’m grateful for the opportunity to play hockey at this level. At the end of the day, I’m a hockey player and a kid who likes to write. I’ve wanted to write something for a while now. After hearing our season was cancelled, I figured that now is a pretty good time to do this. Like the rest of the guy and girl athletes in the SUNY, I’m in all online classes and with zero workouts or practices for the first time in my entire life, I have literally nothing to do. I mean nothing. No joke I’m so bored I’m actively hunting and trying to catch a skunk that lives under my house with a spoon and a hat. I need a hobby.

Anyways, back to the story. EVERYONE is pissed. It sucks. We can sit here and watch all of our old junior teams play full length seasons, hell, I just watched football for 48 straight hours this weekend. I don’t know about you, but I think I saw some damn near full stadiums. How does that work? I think I speak for everyone when I say this, how are we not allowed to play an 8-game season? The whole schedule was designed so there were no overnight trips. You hop on the bus, play a game, hop and go home. The potential to get the virus in that scenario is so slim. You want to know where the potential is high? When every athlete on campus has nothing to do. We have all been smart. No one is throwing huge parties. But come on, let’s be real. Everyone has hung out with a couple people on campus here and there. But what really doesn’t make sense is the fact that I can go to a dining hall with 300 other students. But I can’t drive an hour and a half to play Potsdam and be back in bed by midnight?

Now I’m sure this decision was made with certain precautions in mind and we get that. We just feel taken advantage of. We come to campus, pay full tuition for online classes and then the season gets cancelled and now we honestly have no business even being on campus. At the end of the day we are all old, relatively speaking. The majority of us are graduating when we are 24 or 25. Now that’s not really normal. But we don’t really care, we embrace this because we love this damn game. All we want to do is play.

lil freshman year action

The problems from cancelling this season has a snowball effect that I could talk about for hours. Instead, I’ll just talk about a few. Let’s start with recruiting. If we have seniors coming back to use their fifth year of eligibility given to us, where is the room for the freshman? Sure, some kids will leave, but I feel like a decent number of players will use that fifth year. That doesn’t leave much room or opportunity for any freshman who comes in next year. There are hundreds of kids who will finish junior and be thrown into an absolute blender when they are trying to figure out where the hell they are going to play next year. Aside from recruiting, let’s talk about mental health. Now for most of us, hockey is all we’ve ever done. It’s all we’ve ever known. It’s who we are. Most of us have never gone 5 months without a game. Now we are looking at 21 months… People are going to be lost, we simply won’t really know what to do with ourselves. That’s a lot of time away from something we love. Unfortunately, there’s no way around it, but that is going to take a toll on a lot of us mentally. Lastly, think about everything we will miss out on. This ruins a lot of momentum. A player may come back after 20 or so months and not be the player they once were. This goes for teams as well. Teams may not reach their potential they could have; they might not break records they could have. Take Plattsburgh’s women’s hockey team as an example. There’s no secret, they’re a powerhouse. They’ve won 5 out of 6 of the last National Championships, and last year they were cut short, well on their way to another. Now who knows what could happen, they may lose some top senior players who never really got to finish what they started. That could be two potential national championships they missed out on. Now these are all hypotheticals, but we all have imaginations. Use them.

I know I’m kind of all over the place here. Oops. Another thing that really sucks is watching every other D3 conference in the country starting to practice and prepare for their upcoming seasons. And what do we get to do? Sit here and watch. That’s just messed up.

see you in 12 months

There’s just so much that this decision is affecting. Everyone is so mad because we feel as if none of that was really taken into consideration. Our health was taken into consideration and we appreciate that. Yet, I think it’s fair to say that mental health is just as important as physical health. No season and this long between games is going to affect a lot of us, myself included.

I know this won’t change shit, but I was really bored because I guess I’m not a hockey player for the next year and I don’t really know what to do with myself.

To all the athletes in the SUNYAC. This is for you, I just wanted to express myself and I’m sure most of you feel the same way. So, show this some love. Cheers!


If anyone wants to start an underground league, hit me up.

-Joe Kile #8



Joe Kile

College hockey player. Plattsburgh NY/Troy MI