There has only been one day of official football practice, and things are already getting back to normal for the Michigan football program. Before Rich Rodriguez arrived and as far back as 1879, Michigan had season long football captains. Legendary leaders such as LaMarr Woodley (2006), Stefan Humphries (1983), and Harrison "Boss" Weeks (1902) have shared the peer leadership responsibility for the Wolverines. All this changed when the new staff arrived. Instead, beginning in 2008 rotating captains were selected for each game and permanent captains were named at the end of the season.
As a former Marine, I believe strongly in the concept of formal & structured leadership. I have lived and witnessed the value of peer leadership. Organizations need to be led at multiple levels to achieve greatness. Of all the changes we have endured with this transition, this one just never felt right with me. What kind of unit names their leadership after the battle is fought?
Yesterday, this tweet arrived from Coach Rodriguez:
Regardless of the their versus there grammar mistake (which I am sure will lead to another firestorm of ridiculous drama.... OMG!!!!! our coach can't pass a fourth grade english test!!!!) it was like a breath of fresh air for me and thousands of other Michigan football fans.
I can’t say if naming Captains before the season will make any difference in terms of wins and losses, but it sure feels right. I am sure the players feel the same way.
Congrats to Mark Moundros and Steve Schilling, you have joined an impressive and elite group.
Now go lead this team back to respectability.