Volume 94, Issue 1
Friday, May 12, 2000
Potts the Mustang macdaddy
By Sean Maraj
Where can you go after you're an all-star on a two time national championship team? For Mike Potts, captain of the national champion Western men's soccer team, the only thing left was the Howard Mackie Award, given to Canada's top university male athlete.
Potts was granted the top honour at a ceremony held last Monday in Calgary. It was yet another kudo in a long list of awards that he has won in his four year career at Western. Potts was also named a Canadian Interuniversity Athletics Union all-star and led his team to three straight Ontario University Athletics championships, as well as back to back national titles. This was only the second time the award has gone to a Western athlete. Established in 1993, the last Western Mackie winner was footballer and former NFL player Tim Tindale who won in 1994
After winning the award, Potts was ecstatic considering the level of his competition.
"It's been an incredible weekend and an incredible experience to win it going up against so many [high calibre] guys, it was a great honour," he said.
Having completed such a successful year with the men's soccer team, Potts viewed winning this award as the final evolution of what has been a banner season for him and his team.
"I've had a successful four years," Potts said of his time at Western. "I've won a lot of awards, especially in the last two years and this is a culmination of that success."
Western head coach Rock Basacco was also extremely pleased that his captain was given top honours this year and thought it reflected not only on Potts' abilities, but also the Western program as a whole.
"I'm very happy, his parents are going to be excited, it's a great reflection on the program," Basacco said. "Certainly winning the national championship helped, but he's an incredibly gifted athlete, he's very deserving."
Basacco was also quick to point out that there's more to his captain than just his soccer savvy.
"He's an integral part of the team, he brings leadership and motivates the team to play to it's full potential," he said.
Western co-captain Jon Hasson was also happy about the award and pointed to Potts' confidence on the field, as his most important asset as team leader. Specifically Hasson pointed to his play in the national championships as a good example of Potts' confidence.
"He's confident in his abilities and his team to win. His only goals came in the national finals, he's a playmaker."
Potts was also quick to attribute his success to the Western program.
"They've had a tremendous amount of help in helping me achieve it," he said. "If you look at the players, everyone has a national championship. I couldn't have done it without them."
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