Reveiz, Revised: Linebacker focused on returning to Vols' lineup

Nick Reveiz doesn't need a reminder. Unprompted, the Tennessee linebacker can provide the specific date of the last time he was running at full speed.

"Sept. 26 against Ohio," he said moments before climbing on a stationary bike for rehab. "I'm very goal-oriented. I've got to have things exact."

Reveiz has another day circled on the calendar in the middle of April, but the rising senior doesn't need to be quite so precise with that one.

He's been cleared to run for about two weeks now, and there's obviously a target for him to be back without restrictions from his reconstructed right knee, but if he gets there a bit early there won't be any complaints. And Reveiz is planning on having his equipment back on throughout spring practice regardless.

"They've told me I'm going to be limited, but I'm going to be in pads, I'm going to be running," Reveiz said. "At the same time, there are going to be times when my knee is hurting and I'm going to have to pull out. I don't think there will be any full-contact stuff and I've got to be careful.

"I think I'm on a good pace right now, I think I'm a little bit ahead of schedule, and they've said I'm going to surprise myself. I think I will, too."

That's been the theme of his entire career with the Vols, and more adversity for the former Farragut standout has only increased his resolve to do it again.

Reveiz has gone from a walk-on to a captain. A special-teams ace to the heart of the UT defense, averaging nearly seven tackles per game before losing the last nine of the season to tears in his lateral meniscus and anterior cruciate ligament.

Now a player originally considered too slow or small to ever do much at middle linebacker has to start over again, and that's clearly pushed him through a difficult recovery process.

"I think it's easy after I got hurt to look at how far I've come since when I first stepped on campus," Reveiz said. "Now I've got to do even more work? That's frustrating to think about, but at the same time, this process right here is strengthening me - not only physically, but mentally.

"It was hardest when I first got my surgery, because I went two weeks waiting for it and the swelling to go down, so I almost felt like after those two weeks I could play. Then they said, 'OK, you need to go into surgery.' When I come out of surgery I'm not thinking about football. I'm thinking about whether or not I'm going to be able to walk. That's how much pain I was in. I've got a knee the size of a bowling ball, but I'm thinking, at this time next year my plan is to be right where I was before, if not better."

Reveiz immersed himself in that process right from the start, practically living in the training room and embracing the few exercises he was allowed to do.

He also bought into a recovery plan that kept him from rushing back too early, even when he felt like he could run, pushing himself as hard to follow orders from a doctor as closely as a strength coach.

There was one setback when Reveiz decided to go for a run through the Georgia Dome during a practice before the Chick-fil-A Bowl, and the pain was a reminder of what he had been told all along about playing it safe. That will still be the game plan when the Vols go back to work in early March, but by then they'll at least be close to turning Reveiz loose on something other than rehab.

"I wanted to do other exercises because it was just simple stuff like getting your leg straight and raising it 20 million times," Reveiz said. "They have these ankle weights, I put like 33 pounds on one ankle, and I set the training-room record for single-leg raises. That gets repetitive, but you've got to remember there's a light at the end of the tunnel and that the goal is to get back out there and playing.

"I'm a big believer in everything happening for a reason. What just happened with Coach Kiffin (leaving), that's just part of God's plan and strengthening the character of me and my team. All I can do is work as hard as I can."

That's never been an issue for Reveiz.

Now he's just counting the days until he gets to do it on the field again.

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Comments » 57

TommyJack writes:

Nice piece, Ward.

Hardrocknox writes:

I wish we had about 50 walk ons like him.Get well bro and get ready for 2010 as a leader and player !

allinfordooley writes:

This guy is an animal. Love the work ethic and attitude he has. I agree as many like this that we can get!!!!

DarthWilson writes:

How many stars did this kid have? Goes to show that sometimes you can't be to quick to judge. March on Nick, your one heck of a inspirational story.

OrangeVeins writes:

What a MAN! I mean...THAT'S what we want for our team, right? His dad is Fuad, c'mon...you got that, but besides that....he doesn't act spoon fed at all and THAT'S great about him! Can't wait to see you play next year!!!

GO VOLS!

OrangeVeins writes:

in response to TommyJack:

Nice piece, Ward.

What you said!

423tiger18 writes:

This guy is a man among boys. He's one heck of an upstanding person and an awesome athlete. Can't wait to see #56 on the field again. Go Vols!!

stayingorange writes:

in response to DarthWilson:

How many stars did this kid have? Goes to show that sometimes you can't be to quick to judge. March on Nick, your one heck of a inspirational story.

My thoughts exactly.

UrbanFavre writes:

what a guy...I recently had the same injury about 1.5 months before he did. My recovery sounds a lot like his.

lincolncovol writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

yank9 writes:

Wearing an orange shirt means something to this kid! We need more like him! Go get'em Nick, and good luck on the way!

chrisw2967 writes:

was reading on ajc that some of the ga people are saying they lost rogers to the vols tonite, anybody else hearing this ?

dvols writes:

steroids work!

dvols writes:

in response to chrisw2967:

was reading on ajc that some of the ga people are saying they lost rogers to the vols tonite, anybody else hearing this ?

we dont need no da !!!! rick!

dvols writes:

we will take him though

tractoronthepole writes:

We need more good reporting like this. The volnation needs some good news right now. It does not need false headlines. How about a report on which freshmen we didn't see on the field this year that the senior class feels will make an impact this fall? If you look for the bad in journalism you will find it, if you look for the good you might just find it also. We need the latter.

crimsonviper writes:

in response to TommyJack:

Nice piece, Ward.

true that

CadmiumOchre (Inactive) writes:

in response to KindredSpirit:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

The thread is about Reveiz but I'll sneak in something about the Super Bowl.

I peeked into the USC Trojan forum, they're mostly Saints supporters (Reggie Bush and all that) and hope for a Saints win. I and saw a comment or two about putting down a "smug" SEC quarterback and a few other not so nice comments about Manning. Someone did remind them that USC has some players on the Colts too but it doesn't seem to matter. A few comment that they think the Saints will win if Manning doesn't play for some reason or gets hurt.

I didn't bother to comment myself, just a waste of time to do so but was curious about what they were saying about Cancer K. and happened on the Colts-Saints thing. If the Colts defense shows up and the receivers catch the ball, I look for a blow out, otherwise it might be a shootout.

DannyVol writes:

Nice article. Let's here it for Reveiz...and Ward.

AtLeastMyTeamHasPerfectSeasons writes:

Great article KNS! Take your time Reveiz, don't come back too early. Better to miss some stuff in the spring and come back FULL FORCE in the fall.

allntl1#565211 writes:

Gotta love the kids heart. Hope the coach will put his long term health first and throttle him some because a kid like him will sacrifice everything for the Vols. Sometimes that is not what is best for the player. Hope he makes a full recovery, mainly for the rest of his life.

10cvolnga writes:

Nick, you are an inspiration to not only your teammates, but to many others not on the field. So glad to see your rehabing coming along well. The Vol Nation is 100% behind you!

taylorsvolfan writes:

Looking forward to seeing you back !

Voltose writes:

don't be a wuss stubs, i tore my acl and look how baller i am... --Hkins

nocleats writes:

Lets hope Nick spends some one on one time with the recruits.GBO!!

Cldvols1 writes:

Reveiz is a great person as well as athlete! I had reconstructive surgery on my ACL, Maniscus and PCL so I know what he's talkin about. He'll be back at full speed soon but the best medicine he can consume is time. God does have a plan and I believe it consists of you being on the field this fall. Go Vols and Go Nick!!!

Cldvols1 writes:

in response to long_vol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Realistically, don't speak too soon! You may question a person's injury but never question his heart.

BornVolDieVol writes:

I am so glad to see him fighting back! Nick is one heck of a player and one heck of a leader! He is the essence of what Tennessee Football is. Will be glad to see him back on the field... We missed you!

showmeyourTDs writes:

Unbelievable attitude! I mean, this kid doesn't even have the word "negative" in his vocabulary.....probably can't even pronounce it. These are the kinds of guys that can rally teams, fanbase, and everyone around them.

cgbtn writes:

What is the expectation for the Strength Coach? Kiffin hired and fired a guy to get this one. Will he bail out on us at a crucial time?

bigvol662004 writes:

Get well and good luck, young Reveiz! Your dad and uncle were a couple of great guys to have here and you have maintained the tradition and standard admirably!

st8of10ec writes:

Players like Reveiz make me wonder about the value of recruiting a bunch of so called 5 star talent.

OrangeBlood84 writes:

Keep up the great work brother. Any man willing to sweat and bleed for UT deserves to wear the colors. See you on the field Nick.

FearTheVols1252 writes:

in response to CadmiumOchre:

The thread is about Reveiz but I'll sneak in something about the Super Bowl.

I peeked into the USC Trojan forum, they're mostly Saints supporters (Reggie Bush and all that) and hope for a Saints win. I and saw a comment or two about putting down a "smug" SEC quarterback and a few other not so nice comments about Manning. Someone did remind them that USC has some players on the Colts too but it doesn't seem to matter. A few comment that they think the Saints will win if Manning doesn't play for some reason or gets hurt.

I didn't bother to comment myself, just a waste of time to do so but was curious about what they were saying about Cancer K. and happened on the Colts-Saints thing. If the Colts defense shows up and the receivers catch the ball, I look for a blow out, otherwise it might be a shootout.

What I find ironic is that USC fans are going to be rooting for the guy who will be ultimately responsible for landing them in sanction heaven… how funny!

give_him_6 writes:

Great article Ward!!

Reveiz...That's a man that "Gives His All for Tennessee" each and every day. No stars by his name. No big nationwaide hype. Just a love for the Vols. You can never measure heart and love. And that is more powerful than 4 or 5 stars after your name any day of the week.

Get well quick brother...I miss seeing #56 out there!!!

Volunatic writes:

Tennessee is lucky to have Nick Reveiz. His great attitude and work ethic will continue to help the team through the difficult transition to yet another coaching staff.

CroKev writes:

Anybody see this Onion article about Kiffin leaving USC?

http://www.theonion.com/content/news_...

RoyaltyVol writes:

in response to Volunatic:

Tennessee is lucky to have Nick Reveiz. His great attitude and work ethic will continue to help the team through the difficult transition to yet another coaching staff.

You got that right! I would rather have a team full of Nick Reveiz's over a team full of 5 star recruits any day!

notoriousBIGorange writes:

You've got to love Nick's heart...can't wait to see him jacking people up next fall.

DC's boy Tearbow seems to be having trouble in pro-style offenses...
According to NFL Network's Lindsay Soto, Florida QB Tim Tebow botched several snaps on his first day of Senior Bowl practice. Unfortunately, along with being one of the generation's most decorated college football players comes the microscope at the next level. Tebow played primarily out of the shotgun formation at Florida, and clearly isn't used to taking snaps from under center. Soto added that Tebow's tendency to lower the football below his hips before delivering it also isn't going away. Other reports have Tebow struggling badly with accuracy.

NFL Network
He'll make a pretty good TE though...

givehim6 writes:

Can not wait to see you back on the line. Your leadership will be needed.

vol88 writes:

A true Vol. Just like all the Reveiz boys. Hats off to you all! GBO

pj_ladyvolnMI writes:

Nick, you are such a vital part of this team on AND off the field. We are honored to be Vols with you. Praying for a full recovery and amazing things ahead!

volunteerfan27204#295834 writes:

Reveiz is the man! He is a beast on the field and a role model off of it. I wish we had more like him. Could one of these guys soon be coaching Nick? http://smokiespost.blogspot.com/

MemphoVol writes:

If anybody can come back from this type of injury and come back even stronger, it's Nick.
"A winner isn't necessarily someone who wins every time, but someone who, when they get knocked down keeps coming back with everything they've got" - Roger Staubach

wayoutwill writes:

in response to Volunatic:

Tennessee is lucky to have Nick Reveiz. His great attitude and work ethic will continue to help the team through the difficult transition to yet another coaching staff.

Right on the money!We need a whole lot of players like him!He is a true Vol!

theoldbear writes:

Whether Nick ever starts another game, whether he ever plays another down, he is a Volunteer and a winner for life! God bless him!

tnsportsman writes:

Get well Nick UT needs you man! You are a TENNESSEE TRADITION for sure! Having gone through the very same knee surgery in 74 as a sophomore, I know what you are going through.

You have the best care and latest technology possible, you are a Team Leader and the Vol Nation knows you will indure! Thanks for being a Vol Nick!

GO VOLS!

RoyaltyVol writes:

Well Kiffin steals another one from us, but this time its a coach. Guess we will have to keep looking for a DC

http://blogs.tampabay.com/bucs/2010/0...

CincyVol15 writes:

This guy is a dying breed now-a-days. Positive attitude, determined, and a huge heart. I can't wait to see him tear it up next season as everything comes full circle for him.

Trifecta_Storm writes:

in response to RoyaltyVol:

Well Kiffin steals another one from us, but this time its a coach. Guess we will have to keep looking for a DC

http://blogs.tampabay.com/bucs/2010/0...

Travis Jones from the Saints is a name to keep an eye out for, but not until the Super Bowl is over. Not for DC but for some spot on the defensive side...

Go Vols!!!

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