Leading by example
Trojans talk the importance and responsibility of being a captain
The role of a captain on any sports team is more complex than just being the best player on the team.
“The captain needs to have a connection with the rest of the players,” said Sean McKay, head coach of the SAIT Trojans men’s volleyball team.
“They need to be representative too, socially, athletically and in a situation like this, academically as well.”
McKay said the most common mistake a coach makes is choosing their best player to be the captain.
In his first year as coach, McKay expressed that whom he chooses as the captain needs to be a role model for his players.
He chooses someone who also has the ability to communicate with him as well as their teammates.
“If you’re the captain, you need to be displaying leadership at every practice,” said McKay.
“Even if you’ve had a bad day at school or your girlfriend is mad at you, you have to get rid of that stuff.”
McKay explained that a captain on his team has to be a leader at all times because so many of the players are paying attention to him.
As the current captain of the SAIT Trojans men’s hockey team, Dean Allison takes his role seriously.
“I just try to set an example for the rest of the guys on the team,” said Allison.
Allison sets an example by always working hard in the gym and putting defence first while playing.
“I just want to stay organized and on top of things,” said Allison.
“I offer help to the guys if they need it, and I like to be focused and on track.”
Both McKay and Allison agree that the role of the captain is important during a game.
Allison makes sure he is always leading the warm-up, is always pounding fists with the guys and is the last one to step off the ice.
McKay said that volleyball carries quite a bit of responsibility because the captain is the one who is constantly in contact with the referee.
“It’s very important they keep their cool,” said McKay.
Allison expressed that although he has the title of captain, he is not the only leader on the team.
“We are very fortunate to have a dressing room full of leaders. We are having a great season with great guys, and I look forward to the rest,” said Allison.
McKay said that they are trying to develop “player driven talks.”
“It’s not an easy skill,” said McKay.
“Some of my older guys do it pretty well but some of the younger guys are still learning it. I think that it is important to breed that when they are young, and have a captain in mind in the future.”