Michigan men’s lacrosse coach John Paul announced last week that his team has voted on four captains for its 2016 season: Senior midfielders Kyle Jackson and Chase Brown, redshirt junior goalie Gerald Logan and junior midfielder Mikie Schlosser.
“I think they were a great group to pick,” Paul said. “I think that the three seniors are a really good representation of a class that’s pretty driven, as our first recruiting class, to leave a legacy here at Michigan.”
This is the first captaincy for all four players, and Schlosser is the first player in the program’s five-year history to be elected captain by his teammates as a junior.
“It’s a great honor, truly,” Schlosser said. “It’s nice to know that the hard work you put in doesn’t go unnoticed. It’s nice to know that people respect you.”
Added Paul: “He is, if not the hardest worker on the team, certainly one of the top two or three. I think his teammates elected him because he’s so respected for how much he puts in.”
All four players had strong showings on the field last year, something they all hope to duplicate this season.
Jackson is a three-year starter and is the all-time leading scorer at Michigan with 58 goals and 18 assists. While the senior is qualified from a talent perspective, being a vocal leader is not necessarily something that comes naturally to him.
“There are plenty of guys on the team who are a little more deserving of (the captaincy),” Jackson said. “I’m just glad that my teammates thought I was capable of leading them this year. I think I’m the kind of guy that leads more by example instead of speaking up all of the time, but I’m definitely not afraid or shy to speak up when I feel it’s necessary.”
In contrast to Jackson, Brown is known by his teammates as a more vocal leader, playing an integral role in the team’s defense. Also a three-year starter, he led the team last year in ground balls and forced turnovers.
Behind Brown on the field is Logan, who holds almost every goalkeeping record at Michigan. He was the team MVP in 2013 and 2015, in addition to being ranked in the top 10 in the NCAA in saves per game last season.
Paul has high hopes for these four players but recognizes that there is room to grow.
“They have to constantly be thinking about what they’re doing and what everybody else of the team is doing, and how that helps us or doesn’t help us reach our goals,” Paul said. “If they do that well, and it’ll be a learning process for them, then they’ll help us get to where we want to be.”
The Wolverines’ coach also remarked that it is important for the captains to allow room for leadership from the rest of the team, something Jackson echoes.
“There’s a lot of guys on the team who are going to be great leaders even though they weren’t necessarily named captains,” Jackson said. “We’re going to count a lot on those guys too, as much as everyone will rely on the captains.”
As the team prepares for the first scrimmages of the year on October 18 and 24, expectations are higher than ever, but both Schlosser and Jackson agree that this year is going to be a turning point for Michigan.