Toughness is a defining characteristic of Trevor Reilly's personality.
Reilly's grit on Utah's defense was displayed last season when he played with a torn anterior cruciate ligament. Rather than opting for surgery and ending his junior season, Reilly wore a heavy brace and played through the pain.
Then in the offseason, he battled a different kind of pain when his daughter was diagnosed with cancer.
His perseverance earned him the respect of his teammates, who made Reilly a team captain during the final week of fall camp.
''He's the team leader,'' Utah coach Kyle Whittingham said. ''If you had to pick one guy who is the leader of the entire team it would be Trevor. We expect a big year out of him.''
The Utes are turning to Reilly to fill a key role this season. He'll start at either defensive end or stud linebacker, shifting from one position to the other based on the package. Reilly takes his responsibility quite seriously.