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Football: Haack, Tovell named UL football captains

Tim Buckley, The Advertiser, May 4, 2015


In a break from precedence, the UL football team already has selected its captains picked for next season: quarterback Brooks Haack on offense and linebacker Dominique Tovell on defense.

The Ragin’ Cajuns, however, still do not yet have their No. 1 starting quarterback publicly named.

Cajuns coach Mark Hudspeth said by telephone Monday that Haack and Tovell have been picked in "a vote of their peers" as UL’s captains for 2015.

Hudspeth wasn’t ready, however, to say if Haack will be his starting quarterback in the season to come.

"Still holding off," the Cajun coach said.

Haack spent the spring battling fellow junior-to-be Jalen Nixon and redshirt freshman Jordan Davis for UL’s No. 1 quarterback job and the right to succeed three-season starter Terrance Broadway.

"He (Haack) has a slight edge on everybody because of his leadership, and the way he’s leading, but not ready to name a starter," Hudspeth said. "They’ll compete all summer, compete during (preseason) camp, and we’ll see how it falls."

Hudspeth said that when he arrived at UL, which has four straight 9-4 seasons and four straight New Orleans Bowl wins under his watch, the Cajuns always waited until the season the name their permanents captains.

During the season, captains rotated on a game-to-game basis.

"I just sort of kept it that way," Hudspeth said. "But I’m changing it, because I need captains in the summer and during the season.

"So," he added, "I’m trying to push some guys into some leadership positions."

Tovell – a senior-to-be from Columbia, Miss. – was UL’s No. 2 tackler last season. Haack – from Katy, Texas – was Broadway’s primary backup last year.

Haack tweeted on Monday that work "doesn’t stop here," that he must "keep getting better everyday" and that he’s thankful "to be thrust into this responsibility."

LAGNIAPPE: Hudspeth’s son Gunner Hudspeth – a quarterback from Kirk Academy in Grenada, Mississippi, who plans to join the Cajuns this season as a walk-on – was a member of Kirk’s Mississippi state championship-winning 2-mile relay team last Saturday. … Early 2015 bowl projections from ESPN.com both have UL making an appearance in the New Orleans Bowl for a fifth straight time, with Brett McMurphy guessing the Cajuns will play Southern Mississippi and Mark Schlabach guessing the opponent will be Air Force. … Later this week Hudspeth will attend a regularly scheduled spring meeting of Sun Belt head football coaches.

Anderson, Trim earn mini-camp invitations

Former UL and ex-New York Giants linebacker Justin Anderson is accepting an invitation to the New Orleans Saints’ rookie minicamp, agent Martin Fischman said Monday.

Fischman also said UL cornerback Corey Trim, another client, will be in the Carolina Panthers’ rookie minicamp this week.

Anderson, a senior in 2013 and the Ragin’ Cajuns’ top tacklers in 2012 and 2013, played two games for the Giants last season. He signed this offseason with the Minnesota Vikings, but recently was released.

New Orleans hired James Willis, UL’s 2013-14 defensive coordinator/linebackers coach, with the title defensive assistant/linebackers earlier this year.

The Saints’ rookie minicamp is scheduled May 15-17.

Trim, an undrafted free agent (UDFA) who was UL’s leading tackler as senior last season, also has a tryout invite from the Tennessee Titans.

UL senior defensive lineman Christian Ringo, another client of Fischman & Wiltz Sports, was the only Cajun drafted last week. The Green Bay Packers selected him in Saturday’s sixth round.

As previously reported, several of Trim’s 2014 teammates have NFL opportunities after going undrafted last week.

Agreeing to UDFA deals Saturday: offensive lineman Daniel Quave (Dallas Cowboys), defensive lineman Justin Hamilton (Buffalo Bills), running back Alonzo Harris (Packers). Linebacker Boris Anyama also has received a rookie minicap invite from the Atlanta Falcons.