Brandon McCoy’s remarkable journey at North Texas reached another milestone Saturday night when the former U.S. Army soldier was one of four players named captains for the 2012 season.
Linebacker Zach Orr, quarterback Derek Thompson and offensive lineman Aaron Fortenberry rounded out the quartet.
The Mean Green will open the season at No. 3 LSU on Sept. 1.
McCoy served in the Army from 2004-09 before enrolling at UNT and going through the walk-on program. He started all 12 games last season, when he posted 44 tackles and ranked second on the team in tackles for loss (7 1/2) and sacks (4 1/2).
Head coach Dan McCarney said during fall camp that he expects McCoy to spark the interest of fans across the country this season as he and the Mean Green improve because of his background and dedication to protecting the country.
UNT also is expecting big seasons from Thompson and Orr.
Thompson threw for 1,759 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2011 while serving in a leadership role for the first time.
“We feel good about Derek,” wide receiver Brelan Chancellor said during fall practice. “We feel comfortable with him.”
Thompson and Orr were captains last season.
Being named a captain again marks another step in Orr’s return after missing the last three games of 2011 with a leg injury.
While all four of UNT’s captains are veteran players, none has the experience of Fortenberry. The former walk-on enters his senior season with a team-high 21 starts. Fortenberry played a key role in clearing the way for Lance Dunbar to become UNT’s all-time leading rusher.
BRETT VITO can be reached at 940-566-6870. His e-mail address is email@example.com.