This is not your ordinary college student. When he is not in class, Thomas Hodges is on the ice.
“It’s been something that I’ve really enjoyed doing for the last two years and I look forward to doing this year as well,” Hodges said.
Hodges picked up ice skating as a hobby when he was about 10 years old and continued playing in some minor leagues. Hodges is now an emergency goalie for the Dallas Stars.
“I was very excited when I first heard the news. A little bit nervous too because it’s a big responsibility,” Hodges said.
Former Dallas Stars player Christian Frey, coaches Hodges each week. Frey said Hodges’ abilities and work ethic do not go unnoticed.
“His attention to detail is one of the things that sets him apart” Frey said. “He always will go above and beyond.”
When Hodges is not playing the game, he is teaching it to young aspiring athletes like Cash Murphy.
“He’s a nice guy. If you make mistakes he does not get mad or yell at you,” Murphy said.
Hodges balances schoolwork along with his duties as a professional athlete.
“The workload is pretty hard but it’s still manageable,” Hodges said. “School’s got to come first.”
Hodges said that he hopes to continue playing or working for the Dallas Stars for years to come.
“I’m motivated to stay at the level that I’m at,” Hodges said. “I’m able to stay pretty calm under some stressful conditions so I think those are both useful tools for the organization.”