Hard-nosed Reveiz has 'fire in his eye'

Tennessee linebacker not one to back down from a challenge

Nick Reveiz: Family influence

Tennessee linebacker Nick Reveiz just doesn't fit the mold.

Head coach Lane Kiffin was taken aback when he first met the stocky junior. And in the weight room, Reveiz is impossible to pigeonhole.

Kiffin's first encounter with the former Farragut High School standout came a day after being hired as UT's head coach. In his usually aggressive style, Reveiz went to Kiffin to introduce himself.

The meeting began with the junior mentioning his father, former Vol Fuad Reveiz, played for the Minnesota Vikings when Kiffin's father, Monte Kiffin, coached there.

Lane Kiffin recognized the surname. What football coach wouldn't? 'Fuad-o-matic,' as fans dubbed Fuad, kicked in the NFL for a decade.

Naturally, Kiffin asked Nick if he also was a kicker.

"He said, 'No, I'm a linebacker.' '' Kiffin recalled. "I kind of felt embarrassed. He just put his head down. I apologized to him. He said, 'You're not the first person to say it.' ''

Nick tried to begin anew.

"Let's take it one step at a time," he said. "I'm a linebacker."

As he has been ever since that one memorable conversation long ago.

Just 8 years old, Nick began his athletic career with a simple father-son talk: "I told him, 'I want to be like you. I just want to play football.' "

Fuad, who also played linebacker when he was young, coached Nick. He also instilled a competitive spirit his son would need to excel in sports. Wrestling was often the training method of choice.

"He still says he can take me, but I don't know about that," Nick said with a smile. "We're just a competitive family. We're always trying to compete and get each other better."

Little is off limits when father and son talk some family trash. Oftentimes Shane Reveiz, Nick's younger brother and a UT walk-on linebacker, will take part when playfully attacking dear old dad.

"We always tell everybody that we're the real athletes and that Dad just kind of kicked the ball for fun," Nick said. "It's just kind of a little hobby he had. It wasn't a real profession."

Opposing ball carriers rarely have fun when they meet up with Nick, who is good for at least one hard hit per practice.

"I like to say I have a nose for the football so I just try to find the football every single play and get to it as fast as I can," he said.

Those instincts have Reveiz locked in a battle for the starting middle linebacker job with redshirt freshman Herman Lathers.

If Lathers wins the job, he won't win it in the weight room, where Reveiz rules.

Reveiz ranks high among the athlete lifters who UT conditioning coach Mark Smith has worked with in 16 seasons in college and the NFL.

"Way up there," Smith said. "There's not a day that I've been here that we've trained that he didn't have the fire in his eye."

The fire burned brightest just before spring practice as the Vols held their testing day.

Reveiz walked into the weight room ready to set the bench press repetition record with 275 pounds - the weight lifted for linebackers and fullbacks. Then, Smith stepped in Reveiz's path.

"He said 'No, you're going 315 big guy. Dan Williams got nine.'" Reveiz recalled Smith saying. "I was like 'All right, I'm going to get 10 then."

Sure, Williams may have repped out nine times with 315 pounds but he is a 6-foot-3, 320-pound defensive tackle. Reveiz is 220 pounds and 5-feet-10 - with cleats on.

Smith knew how Reveiz would respond.

"He talks back 'You can't break me!' '' Smith said. "I knew he would eat that up."

Sure enough he did. Reveiz pushed the weight up 10 times, ranking third among UT's linemen, behind only Jacques McClendon's 14 and Vladimir Richard's 12.

"I didn't know he would finish that high," Smith said.

The compliments of Reveiz have been just as strong while he's been on the field. Kiffin says Reveiz prepares as well as any Vol.

"He's taken to this defense," Kiffin said. "He's always up there (in drills). We always have to kick him out he's around so much. It's paid off. I love the story."

Thanks to his lineage and work ethic, Reveiz had duly impressed UT's last coaching staff, as evident by him playing in every game last season and starting one.

Former head coach Phillip Fulmer knew what Fuad meant to UT's program. Defensive coordinator John Chavis had seen Nick pay his dues.

Had there not been a coaching change, Nick may already have been named a starter at middle linebacker. Now, he's forced to impress a new staff.

"Wherever I could help the team," Reveiz said, "that's where I want to play."

As long as it's not kicker.

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Comments » 91

pammyvol1000 writes:

Not going there..
CAN'T WAIT UNTIL O&W game..
Wahoo!!

john#208876 writes:

Gotta love it! Best of luck Nick, keep after it.
GO VOLS

TD_4_UT writes:

Most everybody who has seen Reveiz play knows his intensity, did not see the field enough IMO. GO VOLS!!!!

JMP_Vols writes:

Awesome article.
Love hearing how hard work pays off.

smashmouth98 writes:

gotta love it. I can't wait till the O/W game.

I'm definitely concerned about our depth at LB. I hope these incomming recruits can play!!!!

rockytopatl writes:

I loved Fuad, and I love Nick. They are Tennessee to the core and they have Orange blood. If Nick had the size, he'd be all-world. As it is, he might have to settle for All SEC -- if they give him the playing time.

DennisVols writes:

That is the kind of dedication and passion you want this whole team to have. Making them compete for their position weeds out the weak. "Only the strong will survive"

StroVol writes:

Loving that one. Hell, how big was AL Wilson? Sounds like Nick has the heart of Lion. Go getcha some football son

StroVol writes:

in response to BobbeaVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

The only "punk" is you.

Corky

murrayvol writes:

in response to rockytopatl:

I loved Fuad, and I love Nick. They are Tennessee to the core and they have Orange blood. If Nick had the size, he'd be all-world. As it is, he might have to settle for All SEC -- if they give him the playing time.

Sam Mills was 5'9" and he did pretty good.

1manningfan writes:

don't want to hear about his size at 5'10 that don't mean squat! Ever heard the name Zach Thomas?!!!! This kid has a motor and has a heart of a champion. Never say die and never say the word i can't do it! Go get em Nick knock their block off! Go Vols!!!

murrayvol writes:

in response to StroVol:

The only "punk" is you.

Corky

Don't take the bait Stro. It's how he gets his juice.

Likearose writes:

supersmo18....you're an idiot to wish injuries on ANY player!

belayvol writes:

in response to supersmo18:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I would be happy if he broke 99's fingers and stomped his kidneys where he could not type and dribbled on himself daily. Well, he does one already.

StroVol writes:

in response to murrayvol:

Don't take the bait Stro. It's how he gets his juice.

You're right. Next time I'll let Fletch answer: "I'm sorry, who are you again?" I'm Frieda's boss. "Who's Frieda? My secretary.

belayvol writes:

in response to BobbeaVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Thanks for your comment Boo Boo. Now go tell Ranger Smith he wants you.

StroVol writes:

in response to BobbeaVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Well well, just got some info about the clown act BobbeaVol. I hope you weren't using your real name dipshi.!

the10sevol writes:

Hmm... Vols have spectacular production from the Reveiz gene pool. Like Saudi Arabia found in the 1930's while looking for water in the desert?
Note to Coach O, recruit all progeny, Coach Summitt will assist.
GBO

givehim6 writes:

Sounds like he has a bit off John Hendersons blood flowing in those veins.

Likearose writes:

You know.... this was a really good story....about a young man with a good attitude and desire to do what it takes to play the game. Just in case anybody has forgotten what this story was about...............

HallowedHill writes:

Love to hear about guys like this. He can lead the band for a round of 'Rocky Top' when we beat the Gators this year.

the10sevol writes:

And Fuad has access to power tools, lots of 'em! Who do we play on Halloween? (Sorry, couldn't help it, this post will be removed shortly, lol)

TD_4_UT writes:

Why should we write it down? You post it on every article KNS puts out. You need to break out of your trance. Wake up, the real world is waiting.

DennisVols writes:

volsgatorbait-clown

write it down

gnm53108 writes:

Good article.Thanks kns.

It's gonna be real hard for ANYBODY to keep Nick off the field.

CoverOrange writes:

Nothing wrong with being a kicker, they make serious dinero too. I would take it over the position I play now: couch QB.

Fut-boll bin veri veri gud to me. uh, yah.

ourfourboyz#480227 writes:

the best tennessee teams ever weren,t loaded with 5* recruits they had a few 5* & a bunch of boys who bleed orange like this young man love what i see

allvol9 writes:

Love his attitude and spunk! Impressive young man.

Txvol57 writes:

Great Job Nick, keep it up!.....Chris Donald has completely fallen off!..Is he competing for any starting job?

OrangePride writes:

I have watched this young man for a while and seen him practice a few times. I'm not certain he will win the spot, but I sure wouldn't count him out. If we had 50 players with his heart, we would be national champions. A great young man......and a true, orange-bleeding, VOL. You go guy!!

volstasis writes:

in response to volsgatorbait:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

You're a stupid piece of reptile dung. You post the same old sh** daily. He11, there's no need to write that bull**** down, I'm sure you will post it up until Sept. 18.

HonoluluVol writes:

Seems like he's doing a great job sounds like, and the coachesalways love players who play with intensity. If Coach Thompson say he can do it, then he's good enough for me. I'd rather have a guy with heart than height anyday.

jimmy71#237592 writes:

in response to the10sevol:

And Fuad has access to power tools, lots of 'em! Who do we play on Halloween? (Sorry, couldn't help it, this post will be removed shortly, lol)

I don't get this reference but am intirgued, Halloween rings a bell...didn't Fuad kick a 50+ yarder at LSU on Halloween night with time running out? Why isn't Carlos mentioned in this article, family falling out?

kabzs writes:

A guy that strong and so low to the ground will typically have great pad leverage. If he has speed, he will knock the stink off poo.

Anybody know his speed?

memphis_vol_fan writes:

in response to UTfan4life:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

lol. I don't think Rudy bench pressed 315 pounds 10 times.

n2thecheckerboards2 writes:

This defense may be 1st instead of 3rd this year.

Timed_vol (Inactive) writes:

Fuad "Frank" Reveiz....George Cafego

richvol writes:

Any young man that has this much pride in being a Vol is worthy of our respect. I'm proud he is on our team.

oldvolsfan writes:

in response to volsgatorbait:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

enjoy it while you can dumb butt

coalvol writes:

in response to volsgatorbait:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Why have the admins not banned this kid?? I say kid because no normal adult would constantly post the same thing in every thread.

rocky_topper writes:

last so far!

jhayes0926#638474 writes:

in response to coalvol:

Why have the admins not banned this kid?? I say kid because no normal adult would constantly post the same thing in every thread.

because it gets response from people like you. why not just ignore these posts

suPEARLman writes:

315lbs 10 times........

What a beast!

txvolsfan writes:

in response to Navalorange:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I'll take the over Naval, these interlopers don't understand hardnosed football and dedication.
They only love coaches that cry.

pdhuff#552644 writes:

Is is possible that another languishing Vol is capable of playing SEC-level football?

GreenDevilVol writes:

in response to DCdynasty:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

DC, I have figured you out,the DC stands for either one of two things or both. 1. D'jorts Capitol dynasty of the world or
2. Da Convict Dynasty of the football world; you all been paying off the Fl's finest to keep the POT SMOKING Harvin's of the world on the field !! ??

You and your 63-3 jort wearing tongue tying kiss me on the sidelines friend have $1000. to put on that 60 point margin ?? !!

If so lets put up or in the mean time STFU !!

Docrok writes:

in response to smashmouth98:

gotta love it. I can't wait till the O/W game.

I'm definitely concerned about our depth at LB. I hope these incomming recruits can play!!!!

There are 3 spots on the UT roster that depth is not a problem, RB/TB, CB/safety, and LB! I dont think you have to worry about the LBs! I would look for the incoming freshmen to play some back up roles but TN has plenty of depth at LB

douglasawilliams#582863 writes:

in response to suPEARLman:

315lbs 10 times........

What a beast!

I did 225 1 time. 315 would crush my chest and I would have to roll it down to my stomach to catapult the weight off me. Has that ever happened to anyone else bench pressing without a spot?

jimr07 writes:

in response to BobbeaVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

You would give anything in the world to be able to elevate yourself to "trailer trash" but most trailer parks will not take you. By the way, your Manning Fathead is on the way. Now, you can kiss his rear end every day.

Docrok writes:

in response to BobbeaVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Look dude I am gonna be nice cause well you are able to hide behind that screen name, but Sam Mills was an outstanding MLB for several years for a saints team that was ranked tops in the NFL when he played there! And since you dont know who he was I will go ahead and tell you he didnt play with Archie and is of no relation to the Mannings, not even the same ethnicity! Now as for the trailer trash you speak of well good thing you are not dumb enough to say that to them personally

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