Huskers Choose Captains

Lincoln – The Nebraska football team elected its captains for the 2006 season on Saturday morning, with Zac Taylor, Adam Carriker and Brandon Rigoni chosen to lead the Huskers.

Nebraska Coach Bill Callahan said each of the senior captains, who were elected by a vote of the players, displayed the essential characteristics for leading the Huskers.

"These three have done a great job for the University of Nebraska and have the qualities that you look for in captains," Callahan said. "They have shown great leadership, dedication and character both on and off the field. We look forward to them leading us this year."

Taylor, who rewrote the Nebraska single-season passing record books during his first year with the Huskers as a junior in 2005, will captain the Husker offense as a senior. Taylor, whose father Sherwood was a captain at the University of Oklahoma in 1979, is the first Oklahoman chosen as a Nebraska captain since Josh Heskew from Mustang in 1998.

The 6-2, 210-pound Taylor passed for a school-record 2,653 yards as a junior in 2005, including a single-game record with 431 yards on 36-of-55 passing in an overtime victory over Iowa State.

Preseason All-American defensive end Adam Carriker will captain the Nebraska defense in 2006. The 6-6, 295-pounder from Kennewick, Wash., earned first-team All-Big 12 honors in 2005 after posting 17 tackles for loss, including 9.5 sacks for the Blackshirts. Carriker is the first Husker from the state of Washington to ever be elected a captain at Nebraska.

While Carriker made history for his state, senior special teams captain Brandon Rigoni continues a long tradition of Nebraska and Lincoln natives earning captain honors. A former walk-on from Lincoln Southeast High School, Rigoni is the 10th native Nebraskan to captain the Huskers since the 2000 season. He is the third Lincoln native in the past four seasons elected a Nebraska captain.

Rigoni, who earned a scholarship to Nebraska before the start of this season, was also the 2006 Nebraska Lifter of the Year. The 5-6, 185-pound defensive back is a two-time first-team academic All-Big 12 performer and was NU's 2004 Special Teams Most Valuable Player. Last year he recorded 15 tackles on special teams.

Rigoni said his journey from his freshman season to his senior campaign made his captaincy more special.

"It's such an honor to be named a captain," Rigoni said. "Growing up in Lincoln and walking on at Nebraska, I don't think I could've imagined things going any better than they have for me."

The captains will lead the Huskers onto the practice field for the first time on Sunday, when the team practices in front of the Nebraska student body at Memorial Stadium beginning at 4:15 p.m.

(left to right - top to bottom - Senior safety Brandon Rigoni, head coach Bill Callahan (bottom) Senior quarterback Zac Taylor - Senior defensive end Adam Carriker
Photo/NU Media Relations

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