Room for two under the NCAA’s limit of 85 scholarship players has allowed Tennessee football coach Derek Dooley to send off two of his senior walk-ons with a nice parting gift.
Linebackers Shane Reveiz and Jake Storey have both been put on scholarship for the 2011 season, UT confirmed Wednesday.
Numerous teammates and former teammates took to their Twitter accounts last week to celebrate the news and congratulate the players who have paid just to have the opportunity to wear a UT jersey.
Reveiz, who played his high school ball at Farragut, is following in the footsteps of his brother, Nick, who also transitioned from walk-on to scholarship player during his career with the Vols. While Shane hasn’t been able to crack the starting rotation like Nick was able to do in his final two years, the younger Reveiz has definitely improved. He racked up nine tackles in UT’s second scrimmage of the spring and saw valuable playing time at a position where the Vols are low on bodies.
“It’s extremely difficult and it’s hard, but as a walk-on, you’ve kind of got to expect that,” Shane Reveiz said in April. “They have all their money in their scholarship guys, and you’ve got to understand that, but at the same time you have to be ready at any moment and you’ve got to have a strong mental focus at all times and be ready whenever your number is called.”
Storey has been with the Vols since 2008 and has appeared in a combined 16 games the past two seasons. In that span, he’s picked up five tackles.
Because both players are set to graduate after the season, this move will have no effect on the number of players UT can sign for the 2012 class.
Andrew Gribble may be reached at 865-342-6327. Follow him at http://twitter.com/Andrew_Gribble and http://blogs.knoxnews.com/gribble.