Michael “Ofro” Capeloto currently plays for University of Washington
Tell us about your UW Ultimate career
Playing Ultimate at UW has been an amazing experience for me. I came in three years ago about as skinny and awkward as they come (not much has changed). Even though I had played some jokey ultimate in high school, when I started going to practices I was unprepared for the high level of competitiveness on the fields. It was inspiring to see how hard every single person was working, and how tight knit the team was. My first year I played on the b-team where I learned a lot and bonded with many of the core members of the current UW team. The next year a big group of us jumped up to the a-team, and that was really when I started to become the player I am now. Though I didn’t play much that year, a big talented group of seniors helped me to pick up the sport quickly, and prepare me for a much larger role in the years to come. Over the last couple of years I’ve really tried to step up and make big plays, and with the talented group of players around me this has been about as easily done as said. I’d compare my job to playing quarterback on an all-madden team; throwing to Jerry Rice ain’t hard.
What is your life outside ultimate like?
I spent a while right now trying to think of exciting things I do outside of ultimate but I just don’t think that’s gonna happen. I’d say I’m a dominant SSB64 player, I set a mean pick in IMA basketball, and I play a lot of made-up frisbee related games. In school I’m studying Computer Science, which absorbs a lot of my non-ultimate time. I don’t really know what my post college plans are, but I’m sure I’ll stay involved to some degree in ultimate whether it be playing coaching or just cheering. Most likely I will be one of those UW ultimate alumni that everyone in the NW region is so fond of.
What is your sports background and how did those skills transition into ultimate?
Before ultimate and before High School I spent most of my time skateboarding. Though the specific skills didn’t really transition into ultimate, the outright obsession I had with improving my skating skills translated to my current obsession with improving my throws. In skateboarding just cause you land a trick doesn’t mean you looked real badass doing it, and so I was constantly trying to make everything more awesome even when to anyone else it would appear I had it down. The same sort of concept holds in ultimate. If I throw a super swilly bad decision huck for a goal, while everyone else is celebrating it I’ll be on the sideline kicking myself. That’s just how I am. Also in case you’re wondering my skateboarding career peaked when I kick-flipped down a 4 stair. It was sometime around that point that I realized falling on cement blows.
Red hair, fair skin, freckles. Got any bombshells about a Cloning program going on at UW?
What can I say, gingers love gingers. We’ve actually perfected the art of red-haired recruiting. The trick is to throw a ginger out as the bait, wait until the potential young ginger has let his guard down, and then reel him in quick.
How did your ultimate career start? Do you have any idols or heroes?
My ultimate career actually began sophomore year of high school in Ultimate Frisbee Club, playing on a full football
field with about 16 players on either team. I don’t think I even knew forehands existed back then, and I certainly didn’t know I’d still be playing seven years later. I actually have a lot of idols, in a lot of different aspects of my life. I’d say my frisbee idol is Joe Sefton, former UW frisbee player and current Sockeye player. When I played with him my first year on the team I felt he really embodied UW ultimate: a super hard-working player who would do anything for the team. He always wanted to be the one making the plays, and he always wanted to be on the team winning the game. My real life idol is Brian Scalabrine, because he showed the world that just because you have red-hair doesn’t mean you can’t win championships.
After college I’ll probably get a job and try to act like a real person. At this point that seems far away and I’m trying my hardest not to think about it. Its all about the immediate future. Natties baby.