Behind the Captains

Four seniors lead the 2015 football team

Carson Field, Sports Editor

The football team has started their campaign 3-0 defeating Elgin, Abilene Cooper and Killeen. This year’s team is backed by senior captains Travis Brannan, Paxton Segina, Bailey Middleton and Baker Oliver. The captains are responsible for being vocal leaders on the field, setting good examples and going to midfield for the coin toss before the game. Head coach Drew Sanders lets the players have influence on choosing the captains.

“The cool thing about the captains is that I don’t choose them, the team does,” Sanders said. “Some of the characteristics I ask the guys to look for are guys that are reliable, guys that have a great work ethic and guys that they would never admit to it but that they look up to.”

Running back Travis Brannan was named Austin-Area Athlete of the Year by the Austin American-Statesman and is looking to have another great season this year as he has rushed for 746 yards and nine total touchdowns in the opening three games.

“At the end of last season, the thing that separated us from being at the State Championship level last season was the physicality and strength of the other teams,” Brannan said. “We used this as motivation in the offseason to get tougher, faster and stronger so we could win a championship this season.”

Wide receiver Paxton Segina was the leading receiver last season and will likely be the leading receiver again. Segina is committed to Rice University to play football and will be affected by this team at the collegiate level. Segina has 387 receiving yards and six touchdowns this season.

“It will have a huge impact on me going forward,” Segina said. “It’s taught me how to use my teammates and lean on them when I’m in need and it will certainly help me as I go forward to the next level.”

Tight end Bailey Middleton is another one of the top targets for the Vipers. He said this team will always be very important for him as he will attend Salisbury University for lacrosse next year.

“The football team is like a brotherhood,” Middleton said. “With this large group and family we will have so many memories.”

Finally, defensive end Baker Oliver is one of the top defensive threats for the team and his work ethic played a role on him getting selected as a captain.

“You have to go hard for the whole offseason and show the leadership qualities while working hard,” Oliver said. “You have to have to show certain qualities that will improve the team.”