August 27, 2009

Leaders emerge

Leadership isn't reserved for upperclassmen, but it isn't often a younger player is voted by his teammates to serve as captain of the squad.

That's why Kent State head coach Doug Martin was so excited to see redshirt sophomore quarterback Giorgio Morgan among the two players selected as an offensive captain.

"I was, and pleasantly surprised," Martin said. "I thought that says a lot about him, particularly as a sophomore to get that."

Morgan, who along with senior running back Eugene Jarvis will represent the offense.

"It was a real big shocker," Morgan said. "I told some of the guys I thought they just did that because I was the starting quarterback. I talked to a lot of guys and they said they voted for me. It just shows you where your team is and their confidence level in me to name me a captain and put their trust and the future of this football team in my hands."

After losing Julian Edelman to graduation and the NFL, the Golden Flashes turned to Morgan to take the reins under center. Morgan has started just two games in his career, but his teammates felt strongly enough about his leadership skills to elect him to lead the unit.

"People look up to him; he's the quarterback and they lead, so that's just what he does," said junior linebacker Cobrani Mixon.

Mixon and junior safety Brian Lainhart will represent the defense.

"It means a lot that guys look up to you, not just on the field but off the field they can come to you and ask your advice because we have been here three years and four years; they kind of know we know the ropes," Lainhart said. "It means a lot that they look up to you and respect you that much."

Already, Mixon and Lainhart established themselves as leaders of the defense. Now, they'll act as leaders for the entire team.

"I believe we've just got to do what we've been doing. Just keep leading the way we have," Lainhart said. "Obviously they look up to us, so we've been doing something right. We don't need to try to do too much, just keep doing what we've been doing.

Jarvis, Morgan, Mixon and Lainhart were elected captains, but they aren't the only players providing leadership to the Golden Flashes.

"The thing that made me feel good is (Anthony Magazu) was right behind (Morgan) in the voting. That means our quarterbacks are showing a lot of leadership there," Martin said. "Sam Frist was a guy defensively that got a lot of votes, although he hasn't been out here in two-a-days. I think if Sam had been out here he might have been a guy that was up there too."

The Golden Flashes open the 2009 season on Thursday, Sept. 3 at Dix Stadium when they host Coastal Carolina.

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