As Ray Lewis prepares to take his place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, teammates, coaches, opponents, family and members of the media reflect on the legacy of the legendary Ravens linebacker with their favorite memories and never-before-heard stories.
As told to Glenn Clark
Butch Davis was the head football coach at the University of Miami during Ray Lewis’ final year. Currently, Davis is the head football coach at Florida International University.
He was unbelievable as a leader. The success that he has had doesn’t come as a surprise. The only year I had him, we didn’t get a chance to go to the bowl game that year. The numbers of guys on the team were down and all that kind of stuff.
There was a game, I think it was against the University of Pittsburgh, and we were struggling offensively and having a tough day. I can remember Ray being on the sidelines — somewhat like what Ed Reed used to do. He kind of put the whole team on his back in that game. With like 2-3 minutes left in the game, he’s just inspiring other guys and getting in people’s faces and telling them to keep fighting and keep competing.
At the end of the game, they are driving for the winning touchdown. On a critical third down — inside the 50-yard line, so we’re probably going to lose — Ray makes an interception. So then, we run a couple plays, run the clock down, game’s over, we win. I don’t remember statistically, it’s been so long ago, but it’s one of those typical Ray Lewis deals where he has 14 unassisted tackles, six assisted tackles, a sack, a forced fumble, and then an interception to win the game. From a football performance, that is one of things that I’ve always remembered.
I have been fortunate to be a part of Super Bowl teams with the Cowboys, and National Championship teams, but his ability to kind of put the entire team on his shoulders and almost like will them into victory, that is probably the most memorable thing. That has always been in my mind about the one year I was fortunate enough to get the chance to coach Ray.
To read all 52 memories of No. 52, visit PressBoxOnline.com/Ray.