With just two weeks remaining before the first game of the season, the football team named its three captains Friday afternoon, the result of a team vote held earlier in the week.
Offensive lineman David Archer, strong safety Brad Kitlowski, and defensive lineman Ryan Lempa — all seniors — were elected.
It marks only the 15th time in program history that the team has had at least three captains.
‘It”s the ultimate team honor when your peers select you like that,’ Archer said. ‘When you look around, there are a lot of seniors who could be in this situation. We have a great senior class. If we”re going to be a successful team, all the seniors are going to have to lead.’
Head coach Jim Knowles “87 was very satisfied with the three players elected, eschewing any concern about the lateness of their appointments.
‘I think the players couldn”t have made better choices. Archer is a guy who”s a consummate overachiever,’ he said. ‘Kitlowski is probably the hardest worker on the team. Lempa is so well respected for the work that he”s done in previous years with this program, and his brother has come into the program, he has such a legacy. They”re great leaders.’
Each of the three captains was elected for various qualities he brings to the playing and practice fields.
Lempa, the oldest of the group, is a fifth-year senior who missed his entire sophomore year due to injury.
He has bounced back nicely, though, over the past two seasons. In was named honorable mention All-Ivy last season, playing in all 10 of the Red”s games and compiling 31 tackles, including nine for a loss.
Kitlowski, who this season is making the move from linebacker to strong safety, is one of the most consistent defensive forces the Red has.
He has twice been named honorable mention All-Ivy, and is the squad”s returning leader in tackles (71).
Archer will help anchor a very experienced, deep offensive line, which also includes All-Ivy first-teamer Kevin Boothe.
Archer will be starting for a third straight season, but this year will make the move from right tackle to center, replacing John Megaro “04, who graduated following last season.
‘We”re in better shape, better condition, we”re hitting harder, we”re getting after it more in practice. New attitude,’ Archer said.
Despite the selection of these three individuals as co-captains, the team expects to receive production from each all of the team”s upper-classmen.
‘We have 25 guys in the senior class, everybody is leading the team, everybody in their own position groups,’ Lempa said.
As the Red readies for the beginning of the season, it has taken on a new, highly positive attitude, which many feel was lacking before.
‘I think we”re more of a new team. We”ve got a whole new offense, a whole new defense,’ Lempa said.
‘It”s definitely about attitude,’ Kitlowski said. ‘We”re more into it this year, we get after it more.’
The new captains will lead the Red during its season opener against Bucknell on Sept. 18 in Lewisburg, Penn. Cornell”s first home game of the season is scheduled for Sept. 25 against Yale.
Archived article by Owen Bochner
Sun Sports Editor