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Michigan football star is buzzing about his new role

This Michigan football star is clearly thrilled about his new role with the Wolverines.



Michigan football star, Kris Jenkins,
Nov 26, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Michigan Wolverines defensive lineman Kris Jenkins (94) celebrates as time winds down in the win against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Ohio Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Today, six new captains were appointed in Ann Arbor for the 2023 season, which is set to kick off in just nine days. Michigan football star defensive tackle Kris Jenkins, who has been on the receiving end of an insane amount of preseason hype (even being called a ‘freak’ and a ‘mutant’), was one of the Wolverines chosen to lead this year’s squad. With a lot on the line this year, Jenkins is excited about his new role on the team and what it means for him going forward.

Michigan football star is thrilled with new title

Kris Jenkins, a senior from Maryland, could have been an NFL Draft pick earlier this year, yet he chose to come back for another season in Ann Arbor. Since then, Jenkins has transformed into an athletic freak, even ranking 6th on this year’s ‘Freaks List,’ following in the footsteps of Mazi Smith, who ranked No. 1 on the list a year ago. With Jenkins now officially a captain on this year’s roster, this Michigan football star is excited about what his future in the Maize and Blue may hold.

“Yeah, this is everything,” Kris Jenkins said shortly after today’s announcement. “I never would have expected to be here, so it’s beyond an honor and a privilege. Honestly, I just want to do everything in my power to represent the Block M in the best way possible.”

Kris Jenkins taking on a larger vocal role

Being a Michigan football captain means that Kris Jenkins needs to step up more as a vocal leader in the locker room. Has he been able to do so thus far?

“Absolutely,” he told Augie Pasche of Blue by Ninety. “I tried to become more aware of it this year. Last year I just wanted to feel me more and lead by example because I didn’t feel like I was in the position to speak up as much. I didn’t feel like I had that much stock to be able to do so. Now, with the guys coming up and asking me for advice, asking me for my input, it definitely kind of changed my perspective and definitely got me to speak up more, working on actually being more vocal.”

Learning from past expirience

Kris Jenkins has been in Ann Arbor for a while now and has played under a number of Michigan football team captains. Today, he discussed a few of these captains who have had a profound impact on how he is approaching his new role with the Wolverines.

“If I had to name two (former captains), it would definitely be Hutch (Aidan Hutchinson) and Mazi (Smith),” Jenkins stated. “Mainly because their biggest mantra and their biggest motto was not just being vocal leaders, but practicing what they preach. They were the biggest advocates of not just being the first person to speak up, but also being the first person to do what they say. That really stuck with me because the last thing I would want to be as a leader is the first guy to talk and the last guy to do what they say. I just want to practice what I preach and be able to lead by example and hopefully get the guys’ trust.”

Jenkins, Michigan football still preparing for the next step

Kris Jenkins is officially a captain for the Wolverines, yet the reality and expectations are still setting in for the Michigan football star defender. Has he given any thought to the game day expectations of the coin toss and more yet?

“Honestly, not really,” Jenkins told the media. “I’m gonna try to keep the same energy, definitely amp the team up. Pretty much my biggest goal is to embody what Mazi (Smith) did because Mazi (Smith) was definitely one of the key factors in getting us hyped before a game. That’s my biggest goal is to really embody his type of energy, because whenever we were about to play a game, he definitely got me ready to run through a wall. So I’m probably going to try and be like him in that aspect.”

This is a massive step for Jenkins in his college career, though one that was well-earned heading into the 2023 season. He was an All-Big Ten honorable mention last year, and will likely take yet another massive step forward this fall.

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CJ has covered college athletics in paid roles for around five years, including numerous sports and beats. His most recent work revolves largely around Penn State and Michigan football and basketball. Right now, CJ is the publisher of Blue by Ninety, where he also serves as the site's credentialed football reporter. Previously, CJ has made stops with Fansided, The Michigan Daily, and more.