Then & Now With Andre Revels

The first story I wrote about current University of Cincinnati linebacker Andre Revels was in April of 2004. It was then a friendship began that I hope will continue for many years to come. See what Andre has to say about this season and more.

"Will you look at my film and give me your assessment?" Andre asked the first time we spoke by phone.

I'd seen Andre and his Colerain High School teammates play in the Crosstown Showdown the previous fall and felt he had the skills to play at the next level. But I waited for the film to get an even deeper look and a better understanding of the type of player Andre Revels was.

What I saw when I started to watch Andre's film left me believing Andre had something special and could play at football highest level in college.

Always one to have that little extra pep in his voice and his step, Andre soon learned that college football recruiting is not a science and many things need to happen for a scholarship offer to come in the mail.

While I'm sure there were times he wondered if his dream would come true, Andre never lost confidence in his football abilities and used his strong support group of family members who made sure he'd achieve his goals.

At Colerain High School Andre Revels had become a tackling machine (161 total tackles his junior season). Because of the way Andre attacked offensive players his high school teammates gave him the nickname of ‘Ray-Ray' after NFL linebacker Ray Lewis.

That was over five years ago and I've watched Andre go from a high school student with a dream of winning a state championship to a man looking to win Big East Championships and play in BCS games.

Now Andre has entered his final preseason camp as a Bearcat. He's seen success and injury while adjusting his game along the way. One thing that is still strong about Andre is he's never lost his enthusiasm for the game of football and life as a whole.

I felt it only fitting I'd do my first player interview with Andre Revels.

BI: Andre, I remember like it was only yesterday that you were in high school playing for Colerain.

"Yea that was only a couple of days ago it seems like. But it's been five years ago. It's getting old."

BI: Talk about this year. Coach Kelly just talked about seniors having the sense of urgency, do you feel it?

"Yes definitely. Whey you're a senior this is the last and final run and you've got to make it the best you can."

BI: This spring you had to watch from the sidelines with an injury, how do you feel now?

"Everything feels good. The knee feels great and another thing about sitting out the spring is you get to observe everybody. I found there were things I'd never seen before and probably never would have if I was on the field. So I learned a lot from just standing around and watching."

BI: Coach Diaco brings an intense energy to the field much like Coach Narduzzi did when you got here. What's it been like?

"Coach Diaco is like Coach Narduzzi and Coach Coombs as they come with that fire every day. If you come in with a lazy eye or something like that in a meeting their going to get you jacked up."

BI: Talk about the linebackers this year.

"The backers have got to come in big this year. And all the players have been working hard this summer. Waugh is a tank. I mean anybody that tries to run against them are fools. J.K. is strong and Pig (Curtis Young) and Craig (Carey), I mean everybody is out there giving their all. You can tell just by looking out here today."

BI: What has it been like out there seeing Curtis as a linebacker?

"It feels good you know because I joke around with him because he was a defensive lineman. But you know it's all in good fun because he moves like a linebacker anyways. He's going to be dangerous coming off the edge. I mean D.A.N.G.E.R.O.U.S.

BI: What do you like about the new defense?


BI: You come into camp as the number two returnee in total tackles behind Aaron Webster who had one more than you but with more reps. Talk about what you see this season being like.

"Great, a Big East Championship and anything less than that is a failure so that is what we're trying to do. We're trying to get back to the BCS and just try our best."

BI: The dream is almost completed. What do you look back at? Or do you even look back at this point?

"No I don't look back until it's over with. Just the other day I threw in some Colerain tapes and that was five years ago and it feels really, really good."

It's been a great ride with Andre over the past four seasons at Cincinnati. Just like he'd done his senior year at Colerain the goal remains the same. Win a championship at the highest level the team can achieve along with playing and winning a BCS game.

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