SASKATOON – Virtually every single CIS men’s hockey player had some form of junior hockey experience prior to graduating to the University level. But not Saskatchewan Huskies defenseman Brett McCormick, he was too busy living life in the fast lane as a professional motorcycle racer.
McCormick liked hockey as a teenager, but he loved racing motorcycles.
Huskies’ McVeigh getting comfortable after journeyman WHL career
2 reserves on Huskies women’s basketball bench shining bright
Huskies women’s hoops using advanced stats to stay ahead of the curve
“It was either put on a bunch of weight and go play Midget AAA or race motorcycles,” McCormick explains. “The motorcycle thing was just further along for me at that point. I was showing a little more potential with that sport and I thought it could take me further, so I went that route and I ended up doing well with it.”
McCormick evolved into a world class racer. In 2011 he became the Canadian Pro Superbike Champion.
In 2013 McCormick decided to put his racing career on hold and returned to Saskatoon to attend the University of Saskatchewan. For the next two years McCormick studied mechanical engineering, while also serving as the video coach for the Huskies men’s hockey team.
Last fall Brett decided he wanted to return for a third season with the Huskies, but this time, as a player.
“I kind of just wanted to see if I could do it,” said McCormick. “I knew it was a really long shot and I kind of just wanted to challenge myself. I knew that if I had not done it, I would have been kind of regretting it and always asking that question.”
READ MORE: Saskatchewan Huskies men’s hockey having best regular season in 16 years
Despite not playing competitive hockey for nearly 10 years, Brett made the team. However, McCormick didn’t play a whole lot, suiting up just once in Saskatchewan’s first 24 games. But Brett remained positive, knowing that one day, he’d get his shot.
McCormick’s patience paid off last weekend, when he suited up for a pair of games against the Alberta Golden Bears.
“We rated him as the third best defenseman on the ice, that’s how good he was,” said Huskies Head Coach Dave Adolph.
“It felt good,” says McCormick. “It’s been a long season of sitting on the sidelines and it was kind of nice to have the opportunity to fill in for the boys.”
McCormick’s racing career may not fully be behind him. Brett’s eyes light up when he was asked why he loves racing. But right now hockey is McCormick’s primary focus. He feels honored to play for the Huskies, and Brett’s number one priority is helping Saskatchewan win a national championship.