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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


2009 captains take reins

Michael Ignatov / Arizona Daily Wildcat

Arizona Football summer practice Aug. 21, 2009.
Michael Ignatov
Michael Ignatov / Arizona Daily Wildcat Arizona Football summer practice Aug. 21, 2009.

The  Arizona football team officially announced the 2009 team captains earlier this week.

Seniors Terrell Turner, Earl Mitchell, and Cam Nelson — along with junior Colin Baxter — will be joining arms and calling the coin toss throughout the season. But according to Turner, he may be taking the majority of the pregame duties.

“”I picked it (Saturday) and we got the luck,””  said Turner, adding that he will try and go 12-0 on calling the coin toss.

While his fellow captains may have something to say about that, the real honor of being named a team captain is shared.

The coaching staff has the final say on who the team’s captains are, but in this case, it was the vote from their fellow teammates that meant the most to the four players selected.

“”It felt so good that my teammates would see me as a team captain and would want me to go out and represent our team and our university out on that field,”” Turner said of his teammates voting him as a captain. “”I was always self motivated, but now as a team captain I have to (be both a player and a leader) and help get those guys motivated before the game and keep their composure as well on the field.””

The group of captains has proven their worth through their vast playing experience. They have tallied 95 total starts. Turner is the only captain who didn’t start every game of the 2008 season — he started all but one game at wide receiver.

Head coach Mike Stoops said he is comfortable and confident in his players’ choice of captains.

“”These are some great guys and they’ll do a good job,”” Stoops said. “”Anything we do and everywhere we go, they’re the spokesmen of the team.””

Other than the representation aspect of being a team captain, the players were also selected due to their aggressive nature as players.

Nelson has gained a reputation as a hard hitter in the Arizona secondary, while Baxter said he naturally plays with some grit due to his position on the offensive line.

Turner said if there was a single leader on the team Baxter, only a junior, would be the guy.

“”I guess I’ve got that reputation,”” Baxter said of being known for his violent style of play. “”That’s a good thing too. As an offensive lineman you have to (have an aggressive style of play).””

The offensive guard has started nearly every game he’s played at Arizona — 24 coming into 2009 — and has already solidified his role as a leader on the offensive line.

As far as letting Turner take every coin toss, Baxter is more than happy to pass off that duty.

“”Hey, more power to him,”” Baxter said. “”I’m not a big ‘talk to the refs’ kind of guy, so that’s not a problem with me.””


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