Skip to navigation Skip to content Skip to footer

Mustang Notes: Team Captains Named; Protheroe and Whitson Honored

Mustang Notes: Team Captains Named; Protheroe and Whitson Honored

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Tenth-year Cal Poly head football coach Tim Walsh has announced his five team captains for the 2018 season.

Senior fullback Joe Protheroe, a team captain last year before an injury sidelined him for the final nine games, has been selected once again for the 2018 campaign.

Granted a medical redshirt, Protheroe rushed for 164 yards and one touchdown on 48 carries in the first two games of the 2017 season. Those numbers raised his career totals to 2,461 yards, No. 8 on Cal Poly's all-time career rushing chart, and 22 touchdowns.

Senior quarterback Khaleel Jenkins, also a team captain in 2017, will fulfill the honor for a second year.

Jenkins, who started the first five games of 2017 before missing the rest of his junior season due to injury, completed 28 of 66 passes for 597 yards and eight touchdowns. His 21.3 yards per completion were among the leaders in the Big Sky.

Cal Poly's other three team captains will be safety Kitu Humphrey, linebacker Anders Turner and center Harry Whitson.

The lone junior in the group, Humphrey notched 48 tackles (32 solo), including 4.0 for lost yardage and one sack. He also intercepted two passes, broke up nine other passes, forced a fumble and recovered another.

Turner , who missed two games due to injury, earned eight tackles, including a half-sack, in 2017 while Whitson will snap the ball after playing his first three Mustang seasons at left guard.

Cal Poly opens its 2018 season Sept. 1 at No. 1-ranked North Dakota State.

In other Mustang football news:

• A pair of Mustangs landed on Phil Steele's 2018 Big Sky Conference Preseason Teams.

Fullback Joe Protheroe earned a spot on the first team while offensive lineman Harry Whitson landed on the third unit. Both are seniors.

Protheroe (pictured above at left) was named to the 2018 STATS FCS Preseason All-America Second Team last week. He was placed on Hero Sports' 2018 Preseason Football Championship Subdivision All-America third team and the Clayton Valley Charter School graduate from Concord, Calif., landed on the Big Sky's Preseason All-Conference Team for the second year in a row.

Whitson (pictured above at right), who played at left guard during his first three seasons as a Mustang, moves over to center for his final year. The 6-4, 298-pounder is a graduate of Redondo Union High School in Redondo Beach, Calif.

A total of 25 Big Sky players landed on Phil Steele's Preseason All-American team. Weber State placed five players on the four All-American squads and the online magazine named UC Davis senior wide receiver Keelan Doss as the league's preseason offensive player of the year and senior linebacker Josh Buss as defensive player of the year.

• A pair of former Mustangs are competing for roster spots in National Football League during the exhibition season.

Linebacker and special teams player Nick Dzubnar (pictured at left) did not play in the Los Angeles Chargers' 24-17 loss to the Arizona Cardinals in Glendale, Ariz. The Chargers host the Seattle Seahawks on Saturday at StubHub Center in Carson.

Last March, Dzubnar signed a two-year, $3.05 million contract that includes a $795,000 signing bonus. He is listed as the No. 3 inside linebacker behind Denzel Perryman and Hayes Pullard on the Chargers' preseason depth chart and led the NFL in total tackles on special teams a year ago with 21.

Wide receiver Kyle Lewis (pictured at right) was on the field for three offensive plays and a pair of special teams plays but did not record any catches or tackles in the Green Bay Packers' 31-17 win over the Tennessee Titans last Thursday in Green Bay, Wisc. The Packers host the Pittsburgh Steelers on Thursday.

Lewis signed a free agent contract with the Packers on July 25. He had also signed a contract with the Detroit Lions hours after the 2018 NFL Draft in April and attended the team's rookie mini camp in early May.

Defensive back Asa Jackson, who played for the San Francisco 49ers last season, is a free agent. Jackson also played for the Baltimore Ravens from 2012-15 and the Detroit Lions in 2016.

• It's unanimous. North Dakota State is ranked No. 1 in all NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision preseason polls.

The STATS FCS media poll as well as the American Football Coaches Association coaches poll have been released and the Bison are favored to claim their seventh national crown in the last eight years.

James Madison is No. 2 in both polls, followed by No. 3 South Dakota State, No. 4 Sam Houston State and No. 5 Kennesaw State.

Among Big Sky Conference schools, Eastern Washington is No. 7 in the coaches poll and No. 9 in the media poll while Weber State is No. 8 in both polls. Montana is No. 24 in the media poll and No. 25 in the coaches poll.

Northern Arizona, Southern Utah and Sacramento State are receiving votes in both polls while Idaho, UC Davis and Montana State earned votes in the media poll.