First Name: 1978 SMU Men's
Last Name: Basketball Team
Sport: Basketball
Inductee Type: Team
Year Inducted: 2018

The 1978 CIAU Men’s basketball championship featured two Nova Scotia teams loaded with stars (Acadia and Saint Mary’s), the newly opened Halifax Metro Centre, a city steeped in basketball tradition, and close to 11,000 screaming fans.

Those that could get a ticket were treated to basketball of the highest calibre. The 1978 final was that rarest of entities in sport: a game that actually exceeded the massive buildup and hype.
By way of background, the Huskies came into the tournament as the host team, seeded last, and having fallen out of the CIAU Top Ten rankings. The top-ranked Manitoba Bisons were the team that was heavily favoured and expected to cruise to the national title. But SMU had other ideas. In the first round, the Huskies comfortably beat the Bisons 92-81. SMU’s march to the championship continued the next day with an 82-79 defeat of the University of Victoria Vikings (in that game, SMU forward Tom Kappos had a remarkable 20-point, 20-rebound performance). The all-Nova Scotia showdown was now set, with the defending national champion Acadia Axemen waiting in the wings.

The Huskies proved their dominance in a game that was a nail-biter from the opening tip. The highlights of SMU’s 99-91 win were endless: both teams shooting close to 60% from the floor, SMU guard Ron “The Hawk” McFarland scoring 38 points despite breaking his ankle late in the game, forwards Tom Kappos and Quackenbush dominating inside and controlling the boards, and centre John Brown throwing down an emphatic dunk with only 13 seconds remaining in the game.

For coach Brian Heaney, it was the second of three national championships he would win as coach of the Huskies.

Members of the 1978 Saint Mary’s Huskies were: [Players] Ron Blommers, John Brown, Bruce Holmes, Derrick Lewis, Tom Kappos, Ron McFarland, Rick Plato, Ross Quackenbush, Art Screaton, Mike Solomon, Roger Tustanoff, Mark Vickers, and Frank White; [Coaches] Brian Burgess, Brian Heaney, and Willie Follette; [Managers] Hector Corkum, John Landry, Calvin Smith, and Allan Wentworth; [Trainer] Richard Bishop; and, [Team Doctor] Dr. David Petrie Sr.



• Won CIAU title, defeating Acadia 99-91
• Championship game played in front of 11,000 fans
• 99 points scored set the record until 2016
• Ron McFarland, Tournament MVP with 38 pts in final
• 2nd of 3 National Titles won by Heaney as coach