Submitted by Todd Lewis
The Bucs are busy preparing for the upcoming 2015 season.
Aside from community events and participation, as well as some player recruitment, the Bucs have been occupied with a change in coaching staff. Head Coach Duane Brown (HC for the last four seasons) has retired and Devon Hand has stepped in to fill the big role. For the past two seasons, Hand has coordinated the team’s defense (one of the most ferocious the AFL has ever seen). He’s excited and passionate about taking the Buccaneers in a new direction, one that aims at challenging the Alberta Football League championship.
Coach Hand played football for more than 20 years at various levels, high school football in Red Deer at Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School for the Raiders; junior football for the Abbotsford Airforce and later for the University of Manitoba Bisons. After university he played for the Buccaneers for more than seven years.
Prior to coaching the Bucs, he has coached as the defensive coordinator for the Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School senior team.
His main goal for 2015 is to win and AFL title.
As to his philosophy of football, coach Hand describes it as follows: “I truly believe that football is the most team oriented organized sport there is. Everyone has a role in winning, from the star QB, to the scout team defensive back, and no one man is more important than the next. For a team to achieve victory, everyone must come together on the same day at the same time and do their jobs, making sacrifices whenever asked and do it at 100 miles an hour. Allow this allegory/metaphor: Football to me, is like life and death compressed into four quarters. To find success you must work hard, take chances, be there for your family, make sacrifices, fight tooth and nail when challenged and above all refuse to quit. You do that in football, just like in life, chances are you are going to be successful in what you are trying to accomplish.
“The returning veterans on this team, just like the new recruits and talent that join us, must understand that this game is finite and can be taken away from you at any point. Work, family situation, personal circumstances and, of course, age/injury will at some point come and take this game away from you. When we strap up in red and black this upcoming summer, you will be challenged to leave it all on the field for the better of the team. There will be no excuses. There will be no shortcuts. When the summer turns to fall and the dust settles, you have to be able to look your brother in the eye and say you laid it on the line for the team. This is what the 2015 Central Alberta Buccaneers will be all about.”
The Central Alberta Buccaneers have been busy in the community during the off-season. The fellows ran a skills and drills football camp for the students at Oriole Park Elementary School, hoping to instill a passion and skill-base in the young footballers. The guys also rolled up their sleeves to donate blood. This is the third donation the guys have made as a team; as a result, The Central Alberta Buccaneers are officially partners for life with the Canadian Blood Services.