The impact of the coronavirus outbreak on Cyclone Hockey

Defenseman Max Olson stands at the point against Central Oklahoma on Feb. 1, 2020.

Jared Bravard

The coronavirus outbreak is affecting much of the world and the story is no different for Cyclone Hockey.

Head Coach and General Manager Jason Fairman said it is impacting Cyclone Hockey’s operations, and the full effects are not yet known.

“This is going to impact us in a number of ways, and we just don’t even realize yet how it will impact us,” Fairman said.

Fairman said from now through the end of May is Cyclone Hockey’s second busiest time of the year next to the six weeks prior to the start of the season.

Fairman and his staff already began the recruiting process and had trips planned for the rest of March. They had planned to attend junior hockey tournaments in Minnesota, Illinois and Colorado to watch games and meet players. These events were recently canceled.

Fairman said operations were business as usual until recently. The full effect on recruiting remains unknown.

“Like everybody, it’s a fluid process that changes hourly,” Fairman said.

One of the assistant coaches had already traveled to a Massachusetts tournament before it was canceled. Fairman talked with him about getting him back in the safest way possible. They came to the conclusion that he should drive back.

Fairman said Cyclone Hockey is assessing how to move forward and is giving recruits time to get over the shock of their seasons abruptly ending. Fairman and his staff will be respectful of that process before reaching out to the recruits.

Even though Cyclone Hockey had played its final game of the season, its players, along with other people tied to the team, still go to the facilities.

The team’s cheer squad and pep band hold their respective elections for the leaders of the coming season in the hockey office. Cyclone Hockey also holds its voting for next season’s captain at this point of the year. These end of season meetings are being put on hold.

Cyclone Hockey values the education of its players. The team GPA is around 3.5, according to Fairman. To aid in this, its facilities provide space for a study hall for the players to work on their coursework. This is mandatory for the freshman but is open to all players. Fairman said usually 20 players are in attendance for these sessions which are also being halted.

Fairman said the end of the season banquet will most likely be canceled as well.

Cyclone Hockey’s operations have already been changed in the recent days and will most likely continue to change. The amount of future change is up in the air.

“We’re just trying to navigate the path that we’re going to now take here until there’s not this threat,” Fairman said.