Luke Lambert's Road Back to Football

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COLUMBIA - Luke Lambert is the only Tiger on the roster to see playing time during the 2007 season. Now he plans on finishing his career the way he's always wanted.

Lambert will never forget November 13, 2010, the day he believed would be his last on Faurot Field.

Lambert said, "the biggest thing I remember is just walking and thinking that could be the last time I get my name announced."

He will be hearing his name at Faurot again.  The NCAA decided to award him a medical redshirt, giving him an extra year because he missed most of his senior season with hamstring and knee injuries.

Lambert was relieved to hear about the NCAA's decision,  "I got an email from somebody over in compliance and I came in that day and asked Rex and then I knew it was the real deal right then."

Fellow Linbacker Andrew Wilson says he's glad to have him back, "I am so happy Luke's back. I have looked up to Luke ever since I got here and he is just a lot of help. A lot of experience and it's awesome to have him back."

Lambert's seen plenty of hospital rooms during his time at Mizzou. He's had shoulder and knee surgeries after the past two seasons and didn't practice most of the spring. Now, Lambert is back doing what he does best, "It's been a long wait to finally get out there and hit people." 

Lambert captained the 2010 Tiger team and he's still a leader, but he's taking a new outlook in 2011, "I feel like I didn't put that much pressure on myself this year to perform well. It's helped me on the field more. I think I'm playing looser, more aggressive than I have in the past. It's one of those things where you get another chance and you want to take advantage of it."

Even though he's back on the field, it doesn't mean he doesn't still feel the aches and pains.  Lambert said, "My bodies still hurting, but like I said it's just the attitude. The mindset is not to make excuses and make sure I get on the field playing."

Lambert's already a college graduate and is now in grad school.  He says he's motivated by the games he missed, "When i was waking up during the season and not playing it was like I missed it too much. That's kind of carried me through to this season. That's something that driven me to where I don't want to be hurt. I want to be on the field playing as much as I can."

This year on senior day, Lambert plans to wear pads, "Doing it this time I've going to make sure I remember everything. Make sure I kind of grab onto it and hold onto it for a little while." 

Entering the 2011 season, Lambert has collected 127 tackles in 37 career games at Mizzou.