Morning Constitutional: What’s Wrong With Having a Bunch of Captains?


Today’s Topic: What’s Wrong With Having a Bunch of Captains?

In yesterday’s Constitutional, I wrote about the possible captains in 2019 and received some responses that less was actually more.

In other words, some people didn’t want to see a return to Urban Meyer’s preference of between 7-9 captains per year. They’d rather have fewer captains because apparently more is bad.

I understand why this falls under the umbrella of “everybody gets a trophy,” but it really shouldn’t because not everybody does get a “trophy.” And those who do, worked damn hard for it.

We’re talking about seven, eight, or nine out of 105 players. That’s not “everybody.” In fact, it’s hardly anybody.

When Meyer arrived in 2012, there were five captains named. Every year after that — until 2016– they went with six captains. Earle Bruce and Jim Tressel also had seasons with six captains. The 2016 team had seven captains, which started to irk some people.

All hell broke loose, however, in 2017 when Meyer announced that there were nine captains.

“That’s a lot,” the former head coach said at the time.

But he had his reasons.

“I remember when Mike Vrabel was here, he was in our staff meeting and he mentioned that he was not elected captain,” Meyer said. “Which blew my mind and it’s because — once again, it’s none of my business — but back then they limited it to three or four. I’m thinking that’s one of greatest honors you could ever have. Why would you take that from a guy that’s deserving?

“Since that conversation I had with him, whoever deserves it is going to be captain, and it will be on the wall, down the hallway, and you’ll forever be known on your resume as a captain of the Ohio State University football program.”

Whoever deserves it.

Captains get voted on by their teammates. They see who leads when camp feels impossible. They know which players do things the right way and they know who they look up to.

So what’s wrong with naming them captain if they earn the votes?

Why does that anger people?

Does having four captains make a team better than having eight?

The 1969 team had just two captains. Maybe they could have used some help.

Show me the the proof that less is more.

Are there too many cooks in the kitchen when it comes to calling a coin flip?

This isn’t the softening of America or whatever societal malarkey some want to call it, this is simply giving more players an honor that they already deserve. It doesn’t negatively impact anybody or anything, so I don’t understand why some people have an issue with it.

The 2000 team had four captains — Joe Cooper, Ken-Yon Rambo, Steve Bellisari, and Rodney Bailey. Is that really better than 2017’s JT Barrett, Billy Price, Sam Hubbard, Terry McLaurin, Parris Campbell, Tyquan Lewis, Jalyn Holmes, Chris Worley, and Tracy Sprinkle?

Do you know how many captains the 2002 team had? Two — Michael Doss and Donnie Nickey. How many players were integral to that national championship? How many leaders did that team have?

The 2002 team is one of the most beloved teams in Ohio State history. And they did it with way more than just two players who deserved a captaincy.

Urban Meyer wanted to see his players rewarded not just at the time, but for the rest of their lives.

How can that upset anybody?