Vivian, who helped create Bowling Green men’s hockey program, CCHA, passes away at 79

Jack Vivian, in back, was Bowling Green’s first-ever head coach (photo: BGSU Athletics).

Jack Vivian, a key figure in the creation of the BGSU varsity hockey program as well as the original CCHA, has passed away.

He was 79.

Vivian was inducted into the BGSU Athletics Hall of Fame in 2008.

A native of Strathroy, Ont., Vivian was hired at BGSU to be a graduate assistant for the football program, coach the club hockey team, and to direct the completion of the BGSU Ice Arena (now Slater Family Ice Arena). Under his watch, hockey became a varsity sport in 1969 and Vivian became the first head coach of the program.

Playing for two seasons without a conference, Vivian was instrumental in the creation of the CCHA, joining forces with Lake Superior State, Ohio, Ohio State and St. Louis. The 1971-72 team went 21-10-2, the best record of his tenure and the 1972-73 team won the program’s first CCHA tournament, beating St. Louis and Ohio State at the BGSU Ice Arena.

Vivian went 44-9-2 as head coach at the club level before compiling a mark of 68-53-8 in four seasons leading the varsity program.

In May 1973, Vivian accepted the general manager position for the WHA’s Cleveland Crusaders. At the time, he was the youngest general manager in major professional hockey. Vivian took over head coaching duties midseason of the 1974-75 year and went 21-21-2.

Vivian became a scout with the New York Islanders in 1976 and was with the organization for 17 years. He also oversaw the construction and opening of Miami University’s Goggin Ice Arena. Vivian went on to a run an ice arena construction and management consulting business.

More information, such as funeral arrangements, will be made available once finalized.