August 5, 2007

You can call him Captain Pig

Generally, the selection of captains does not hold much suspense. Pick three of the team's best older players, throw in a reserve who has represented the program well and is respected by his teammates and you've got your leadership. You can generally name the captains of a team weeks or months in advance. Junior college players who have been on campus for just 12 months are not usually on the list of predictions.

But Missouri senior safety Pig Brown, despite entering his first season as a starter and just his second year in the program, was dubbed a captain by his teammates for the 2007 season.

"It says an awful lot," said head coach Gary Pinkel. "First of all, he's got a great work ethic, he plays hard and obviously he's a player that has always been emotional. He always plays with great enthusiasm and I think that ignites people around him. I think that's what they saw when they voted for him."

"I came in day in and day out, I worked hard every day," Brown said after Saturday's first practice. "My teammates put trust in me and I put trust in them and I don't think they made a bad decision."

Brown and Pinkel both mentioned that there were "eight or nine" Tigers that could easily have been voted captains.

"It's one of the highest honors you can receive," said fellow captain Lorenzo Williams. "Pig and I were talking and it's just real humbling for your teammates to vote you a captain."

Brown and Williams are the defensive representatives for a unit that is receiving its share of shots and doubts from pre-season prognosticators. The offense is expected to be one of the best in the country, but most observers feel the Tigers will go only as far as their D.

"We don't really come in with a chip on our shoulder," Brown said. "There's always gonna be a bunch of talk."

With Pig in charge, that's one thing of which you can be sure.

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