As we all know, it’s sometimes difficult when you are the younger sibling, as you are constantly being undermined by your older sibling as they choose to do a sport or an activity first, and have more experience than you in it.
But in Jaeger White’s case, he has proven he is just as good at the sport of hockey than his older brother Torrin.
White is a forward currently committed to the Carleton Ravens men’s hockey team of the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) for the 2019-2020 season.
Growing up in Medicine Hat, Alberta, White got his start in hockey like any young kid his age, being introduced to it by his father.
“My dad is from east end Saskatchewan, and I probably started skating there when I was about three or four. Probably because my brother played, so, I probably just wanted to be like my brother when I was a little kid, just doing what he was doing,” White said.
Over the course of his hockey career, White has been a prominent figure in the Western Hockey League (WHL), but prior to that, he played for Peewee, Bantam, and Midget leagues around Alberta and British Columbia.
White got his start in organized hockey with the Medicine Hat Venom Peewee AA in the 2010-11 season. With the Venom, White played in 35 games, recording 136 goals and 30 assists for a total of 166 points.
Following that season, White moved up to the Medicine Hat Hounds Bantam AAA of the Alberta Major Bantam Hockey League (AMBHL). With the Hounds, played in 38 games, recording 32 goals and 28 assists for a total of 60 points.
“Playing Peewee was a lot of fun. I had a lot of close buddies on that team. And then moving into Bantam, it’s a big step, and fortunately I found some success my first year,” White said.
Due to the success he had in his Bantam year, White got the chance to go up to Burnaby, BC, and play for the Burnaby Winter Club Bantam A1-T1 team of the Pacific Coast Bantam Hockey League (PCBHL). While on Burnaby, White played in 58 games, recording 72 goals and 93 assists for a total of 165 points.
“I had an opportunity to move to Burnaby to play. I met a lot of new friends out there that I’m still really close with, and we had a really, really amazing team out there,” White said.
While at Burnaby, one of White’s teammates was Matt Barberis, another Ravens recruit set to join the Ravens for the 2019-2020 season.
“Barbs and I have talked a lot in this process about what we wanted to do, and just with our options, and we both felt like Carleton was a great place for us to go,” White said.
“And to be able to spend the next four years with him is for sure a big positive in this decision, and he’s a great guy and a great player, and it’ll be awesome to play with him again,” he added.
Following his season in BC, White returned back to Medicine Hat, where he played for the SEAC Tigers Midget AAA of the Alberta Midget Hockey League (AMHL). While on the SEAC Tigers, White played in 29 games, recording 12 goals and 17 assists for a total of 29 points.
In the 2013-14 season, White’s WHL draft year descended upon him, and he was drafted in the fourth round, 72nd overall, by the Lethbridge Hurricanes.
“It was really exciting to be drafted to a team that was so close to home. Lethbridge is just under two hours away from Medicine Hat, so it was nice to have my friends and family able to come to games,” White said.
“I played my first game when I was 15, and I played my fourth game in Medicine Hat at the old arena, so that was one of my favourite memories,” he added.
White would then spend the next two years playing on the Hurricanes, before seeing stints with the Everett Silvertips, Brandon Wheat Kings, Brooks Bandits, Medicine Hat Tigers, and Kootenay Ice.
While on Lethbridge, White played in 68 games, recording five goals and 14 assists for a total of 19 points.
“I got my start with Lethbridge when I was 16, and we weren’t the best team, but we were a really close team. I had a lot of fun my first year and it was a good experience,” White said.
The 2015-16 season was choppy for White, as he played a combined 18 games with the Silvertips, the Wheat Kings, and the Bandits, due to a broken collarbone which required surgery to repair.
Following his surgery, White spent a total of 15 months off the ice, before getting the chance to come back home and play for his hometown WHL team.
While on the Tigers, White played in 74 games, recording 12 goals and 28 assists for a total of 40 points. The year was special for him due to returning from his surgery and rehab, but it was also special for the fact he was playing for the team he had dreamt of playing on as a child.
“It was pretty special for sure. I love the city of Medicine Hat, and it was amazing. And it was the closest group I’ve ever been a part of,” White said,
“I still keep in contact with pretty much every single person from that team, and we weren’t the most skilled team, but we found a lot of success because we were just super close, and bought in,” he added.
Following his season with the Tigers, White was traded to Kootenay in the summer of 2018. While on the Ice, White played in 67 games, recording 28 goals and 24 assists for a total of 52 points.
“I had a really good year there, a lot of fun in my final year,” White said.
While playing in the WHL, White has had many memorable moments, but the one that sticks out in his mind the most, is when he signed with his hometown team and got to play for the Tigers.
And when asked about what he’ll miss most about his time in the WHL, White said that he will miss the lifestyle of it all.
“You just have to cherish all the moments. It’s a pretty incredible time, you’re hanging out with 20 of your best friends all day, and there’s not a lot of worries in the world if you really think about it,” White said.
“You’re playing in the best junior league in the world, and you got billets who cook for you, and at the same time while you’re living out your dream, you’re getting your education paid for,” he added.
White will now be following in his older brother’s footsteps as he embarks into his own U Sports career, as White’s older brother Torrin currently plays for the University of Lethbridge Pronghorns of the Canada West.
“I think the CIS is an incredible league, and I’ve got to watch my brother play in it and see just how good the hockey is, so, to be able to pursue my dream while getting my education, at such a great school and hockey team as Carleton is, is amazing,” White said.
And White credits his older brother Torrin, and his step-brother Connor, for helping him reach his potential in hockey.
“Torrin is three years older than me, so, he had the upper hand a lot growing up. We played a lot of mini sticks, NHL video games, street hockey, anything hockey related he was guiding me through it. And then a few years back, my mom got married,” White said.
“And my step-brother, he actually played in the WHL too, so, I got to have a second role model there, in Connor. So, to have two big brothers that went through the WHL process has been helpful,” he added.
As for his decision to come to the Ravens, White has credited the coaching staff of Shaun Van Allen and Mark Cavallin in being part of his decision.
“I had a lot of options, and I took my time and weighed the pros and cons of the different schools, and I met with Shaun Van Allen, and Mark Cavallin, and we talked lots, and it just seemed like the best fit for me,” White said.
“The coaching staff is unbelievable, and a few of my buddies have committed there, and it’ll be nice to be able to play hockey and go to school with them. And I think Ottawa is a great city, I’ve never lived in Ontario, so, I’m looking forward to a new experience,” he added.
And as for what he’s looking forward to the most about coming to Carleton, White has said he’s looking forward to playing in an entirely new league.
“I’m looking forward to seeing what kind of league the OUA is like, and just a new challenge and pushing myself to have success,” White said.
And similar to Ravens recruit Mark Grametbauer, White is looking forward to the fact he’ll get the chance to settle on to the Ravens for four to five years without worrying about being traded.
“In my WHL career, I played for a different team every year, and it has its pros and cons. Obviously moving around all the time isn’t ideal, but I met a ton of new friends and had new experiences, but it’ll be nice to be in one place for four years, and to get settled in there and not have to worry about going somewhere else,” White emphasized.
Like many athletes, White has faced all sorts of challenges and adversities, such as having to get used to not being the go-to-guy, and getting traded. However, the biggest adversity he has faced has been the injury he sustained when he was 18 years old.
“It was pretty terrible. I spent a lot of time in the sling, and I couldn’t do a lot of whole working out. It probably set me back a lot in trying to come back,” White said.
“It was pretty difficult to not be able to be at training camp and near the shape I should have been at, or probably even ready to play, so I had to take some extra time off to make sure that my health was coming first,” he added.
Although the adversities White has faced have happened in the WHL, White has also noticed he has grown and developed more as a player and as a person due to his experience.
“You develop as a person so much, and the league is so underrated for that in that you mature so much, and build so much character,” White said.
“And I’ve noticed a lot of growth in myself as a person and a player, and I have the WHL to thank for that,” he added.
And due to his hockey career, White has also learned many valuable life lessons that can be applied to himself outside of hockey.
“How to deal with adversity, your coaches instill hard work in you, and show you how to carry yourself, and how to be a character person, and it shows you, with balancing school and hockey, how to be responsible and manage your time, and you get to be with your friends all the time, and you get that teamwork mentality,” White said.
“There’s just so much. I could go on and on with what hockey has taught me, but luckily, I get to continue playing and learning new things,” he added.
And due to the fact White has learned so many lessons, he takes pride in the fact he is a competitive person who wants to do anything to help his team win on any given night.
“I like to say that, on any given night, I did all I could and, at the end of the night if I look in the mirror, and I didn’t do everything I could to help my team win, it’s going to be a sleepless night for sure,” White said.
“And I don’t like to have those nights, so I just like to work my hardest and to be able to say I left it all out there,” he added.
And as for what the future brings following his university career, White just hopes he will have the chance to continue playing the sport he so desperately loves.
“I would love to continue to play pro hockey, whether that’s signing a pro deal in North America, or going to Europe,” White added.
“There are so many leagues over in Europe with so many good players, and I think that would be a very cool experience.”