April 1, 2023
Twenty two days shy of the 45th anniversary of winning a CCAA national hockey championship, a team returned to campus to join their coach at an event in his honour. The 1977-78 College of Cape Breton Capers were among the 150 on hand for the dedication of The Dr. Carl "Bucky" Buchanan Capers Hall of Fame in Sydney, Nova Scotia on March 3rd.
As a 'come-from-away' Cape Bretoner, Buchanan spent 52 years of his adult life on the great island including a quarter of a century at the post-secondary institution before relocating to the mainland in 2020 to be closer to family.
In 1968, the native of Sussex, New Brunswick became the first athletic director at Xavier Junior College. In his first year, he coached hockey and soccer, taught three courses and ran the intramural program. At the time, there were no sport venues on campus and no college competition, but that was about to change. He helped found the Nova Scotia College Conference which is now known as the Atlantic Athletic Association and played a key role in development of numerous athletic venues beginning with the Sullivan Field House.
When the amalgamation of Xavier Junior College and Nova Scotia Eastern Institute of Technology occurred in 1974, Buchanan was tasked with merging the two athletic programs. During the process, he introduced the team name of Capers and the team colours of green and orange.
A permanent space for the Hall has been a team effort nearly five years in the making involving the university, the alumni and the athletic department. The Hall features a wall dedicated to the timeline of the Capers athletic program, a wall focused on the inductees and display cases concentrated on sport teams and Buchanan. The Hall overlooks the basketball court at Sullivan Field House and has an area for events including media and sports conferences as well as conventions.
The first inductions into the Hall occurred on September 17, 2018 when Buchanan and the first post secondary hockey team from the Atlantic provinces to win a national championship – the 1977-78 College of Cape Breton Capers – were enshrined.