Posted by ESPN.com’s Graham Watson
Air Force cornerback Reggie Rembert got in some undisclosed trouble this offseason and almost missed his junior season. But what he learned while watching the games from the stands and on television was not only how important football is to him, but how important his teammates are. So when he made his home debut against San Diego State last week, he made his presence known by having two interceptions, a forced fumble, a team-high seven tackles and a fumble for a score.
This week he talks about his return, this week’s game against Navy and what the Commander-in-Chief Trophy means to the Air Force Academy.
What was it like to finally get in a game and really contribute last week?
Reggie Rembert: It felt great. It’s been a while since I’ve really gotten to practice knowing that I’m going to play, so I had a different kind of mindset with practice. It just felt really good to get out there and play with my brothers.
Did you think you’d have as good a game as you did after missing so much time?
RR: I mean, no, but I’m kind of happy I did. I didn’t necessarily think I’d have the game of my life so far.
Would you consider that the game of your life?
RR: I’d consider it the collegiate game of my life, that’s for sure. I had some pretty outstanding games in high school, but for collegiate, yeah, definitely.
What was going through your mind that whole time when you were sitting out?
RR: Just, man, I wish I could be out there. That’s pretty much how anybody else would think of it. It sucked. I really wished I could have been out there playing with them because I had to watch a couple of the games in the stands for one and then the other one I had to watch on the TV. So that kind of sucked. I was just was wishing I could be out there.
Did you have to make amends with your teammates or anything like that?
RR: No. Basically, when the time clock was up, I was back. They just kind of welcomed me back and we were ready to roll.
Now you guys are going into your first Commander-in-Chief game, what’s the feeling around the team right now?
RR: Everybody’s really anticipating it. Everybody’s really ready to roll. My last two years here we’ve lost, so we’re just ready to put that on the table and keep moving forward.
Does this team feel like it’s finally ready to take back the trophy?
RR: Definitely. But every year the team is ready to take it back and everything, it’s just pretty much we need to play mistake-free football if we want to take it back and we haven’t done that the last two years.
Is it harder to focus on the Commander-in-Chief Trophy when you play in a conference and you’re also trying to win your conference?
RR: Yeah, it is. It’s two different types of things. Like, the cadet wing really likes to see a win with Navy, but it’s not necessarily our main focus. Our main focus is the conference. But, we do see the significance of the Commander-in-Chief Trophy and we still want to make that a victory.
That’s got to be tough because the other two academies get to solely focus on the Commander-in-Chief Trophy and really put all their efforts into that.
RR: Yeah, I mean, you got to take it how you can. We’ve got some things we’ve got to worry about and they’re Independents. They can kind of focus a little bit more on this as opposed to winning a conference. It’s maybe to their advantage a little bit.
How exciting is this week for you guys around campus? Do people talk to you more about the game?
RR: Oh, yeah. It’s a big game for the cadet wing. Everyone’s just tired of losing. They’re just like, ‘Hey, whatever you do, please beat Navy this year.’ It’s that time now and they just keep kind of throwing that in your ear that they really want a victory.