Revels Still Remembers 2005 Bell Battle

While Andre Revels wasn't on the field for the Bearcats battle for the Victory Bell in 2005 he was on the sidelines. Former head coach Mark Dantonio wanted all of his players to get an understanding of the importance of the Miami game and that Battle for the Victory Bell has never gone far from his Andre's memory.

In 2005 the University of Cincinnati football program was under second year head coach Mark Dantonio. With a team made up of many freshmen playing early in their careers Dantonio wanted to make sure those who would be sitting out the year got an understanding of the importance of the Battle for the Victory Bell and the rivalry against Miami.

The outcome of that one game left a lasting impression on many of the young Bearcats and a few like Andre Revels are still in the program and still remember.

As a fifth-year senior Andre Revels has seen the highs and lows playing against rival Miami. As a true freshman Revels didn't play but was on the trip to RedHawk land for what would become a blowout by a veteran RedHawks squad. Despite having won the past three Battles for the Bell, Andre Revels still remembers that 2005 game and has used it as a reminder of just how far the program has come in such a short amount of time.

Now the tables are turned and it's the RedHawks fielding a lot of young players as the Bearcats head to Miami looking to win their fourth clash for the Victory Bell in a row and fifth game of the season. Don't think for one minute that Andre Revels has forgotten the 2005 even with all the success the program has seen the past couple of years.

"Anytime you get beat the way we did my freshman year you remember it and it sticks with you for a long time. It's always there in the back of your mind and you use it as motivation every time you have to play that team. Any time you play a rival you want to come back victorious but when you walk into that locker room and you hear the bell ringing (Loud) it makes you real proud to be a Bearcat."

While there will be much talk about the game against the RedHawks, it's all the talk surrounding the Bearcats that have fans and the media talking highly of the football program as a whole. Andre knows things must stay in perspective.

"You can't really worry about the rankings because if you drop a game they'll forget you just as fast as they found you. The biggest thing is not to listen to the crowds, the media or all the family that text you each day telling you how great your life is. You've just got to stay focused and continue on the journey. We'll all look back on it when it's over with."

As one of the team leaders Andre and his fellow seniors take their role serious. Each player brings something different to the program and it's what makes the game of football special for many of them.

"I feel like that is one of the greatest things about the game of football. You have to bond with so many different types of people. You've got guys who got here last year and guys who've been here for five years. You've got white guys, black guys, younger individuals and older individuals; all together the main focus for all of them is winning and that is why their here and that's why they know you're here, and as long as everyone keeps that perspective, in which we have been, as this is probably the tightest senior class I've seen since I've been here, great things are going to happen and great things are happening."

After most practices you'll find the senior members of the team huddled together talking. What is said remains between them, but Andre did give some insight into why they talk.

"Senior meetings are to address the positive and negatives of the practice we were just in. We want to make sure everyone's on the same page because if everyone is on the same page it means were all going in the same direction."

Having now reached his final season in the Red & Black, Andre knows each day that goes by is special in its own right. But time right now is in short supply and when there is some the mind at times will take you back on the journey you're just finishing.

During the season everything flies by. From time-to-time you stop and take a breath and realize your eating lunch next to a guy you might not see again after this season. You just never know as I might be out in California with my uncle Joe next year. But I'm just trying to soak it all in and stay focused because the main thing is about winning. There is such a great brotherhood here it's like a second family and something you know you're going to miss when it's over."

When Andre was a senior at Colerain High School he knew he'd have a tough decision to make about college. While he had programs from across the country offering a variety of different options, it was Cincinnati that gave him the chance to be a scholarship student-athlete. Would he change anything that he's experienced over the past five years?

"I wouldn't change anything at all. I'm really, really happy to have chosen the University of Cincinnati and encourage anybody who is looking at or being recruited by the University of Cincinnati to really, really soak it in and to see where the program has been and where it's going. With Coach Kelly and his staff this program is not going to fall off at all. It's going to continue to go up, up and up in the years to come."

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