The only sure thing when it comes to weekly captains for MSU is that senior safety Xavier Henderson is going to be one of them. He has now been named a team captain for each of the first seven weeks of the season in 2021 thus far. This week, Henderson is joined by junior running back Kenneth Walker III, redshirt junior defensive tackle Jacob Slade and redshirt senior offensive lineman Blake Bueter.
Henderson continues to be the unquestioned leader of the team as a whole, and the fact that he has been voted a captain every single week speaks to his character and how he is viewed by his teammates and coaches. He leads the Spartans with 52 total tackles so far this season, and has also recorded six tackles for loss, two sacks, one pass breakup and one interception.
Walker has earned the role of captain for a second consecutive week now, following yet another great performance with 29 carries for 233 yards (8.03 yards per carry) and a 94-yard touchdown run, which was the longest play from scrimmage in Michigan State program history. Walker’s Heisman campaign is really gaining steam now, and he leads the nation with 913 rushing yards, 680 rushing yards after contact and 152.2 rushing yards per game.
Slade has been named captain for the first time this season. He has played well in the defensive trenches, despite dealing with a broken hand injury. Last week against Rutgers, Slade recorded four tackles and a fumble recovery. On the season, he has 17 tackles, two tackles for loss, one sack, one fumble recovery and one pass breakup. However, all of the little things he does at the defensive tackle position do not necessarily show up on the stat sheet. He makes an impact every game.
This is also Bueter’s first time being named captain this season. Bueter, a former walk-on who later earned a scholarship, is now in his fifth-year with the program. He does not generally start, but since Michigan State heavily rotates its offensive line units, Bueter gets a lot of reps and has been a solid contributor for the Spartans this season.