Heatherly Shows Patience in Becoming Mocs Team Captain
Mocs linebacker Shane Heatherly took a detour in becoming a team captain. He lost his starting job. But he never lost his team perspective. Ask head coach Russ Huesman about Shane Heatherly, and you get a lot of saracasm. "He stinks. Hate Shane. Bad football player. Shane. I didn't see you back there."(laughter) Added Heatherly,"He's a really good coach. He always makes me laugh about something like that."
But Heatherly didn't have as much to laugh about last season. He was the projected starter going into the 2011 season, and then he got hurt. "It was a high ankle sprain on my left ankle. Happened the fifth day of camp. Wasn't that bad, but it kept nagging at me. And with Wes playing so well, it was hard to put me back in." That would be linebacker Wes Dothard who went on to have an All-American season. Even though Heatherly wasn't getting much playing time, he maintained a positive attitude. "It's obviously really frustrating, especially not having something that you are doing wrong that you can fix. But having an injury that keeps holding you back. At the end of the day, you are here for the team. People don't look at what I'm doing. They look at what the team's record is. I was all right with how we were playing as a defense, so it was okay with me." Added Huesman,"I wish they were all like him. Very selfless." And maybe Heatherly's selfless attitude is paying off. He's back as a starter, and he got his first career sack against JSU. Said Huesman,"It's a credit to him. He came back. Fifth year. Voted team captain. His teammates did. And you're right, he's off to an excellent start. Only expect him to get better and better as the year goes on."