Ray Lewis fires up ... an NIT team?

March, 29, 2012
3/29/12
7:00
PM ET

There's no disputing the power of Ray Lewis' motivational speeches. When he decides to deliver them, well, they can raise an eyebrow or two.

Lewis, the Pro Bowl Ravens linebacker, has become a hot topic on the Internet for giving a passionate talk to the Stanford men's basketball team before Tuesday night's NIT semifinals. Wait, NIT? Semifinals?

Let me get this straight, Lewis was brought in to speak at the No. 2 college basketball tournament and it wasn't even for the championship. What's next? Is Lewis is going to pump up a team before the quarterfinals of the state badminton tournament?

Lewis
Lewis
To his credit, Lewis spoke to the Stanford basketball team as if Ed Reed and Ray Rice were sitting in the room. "Wins and losses come a dime a dozen," Lewis said. "But effort? Nobody can judge effort. Because effort is between you and you. I'm pissed off for greatness. Because if you ain't pissed off for greatness, that means you're OK with being mediocre."

Not surprisingly, Stanford went on to beat Massachusetts, 74-64. Lewis was invited by the Stanford coaching staff, and he showed once again how he likes to help fellow athletes. His cell phone has over 200 numbers of current NFL players, who frequently call and text him to chat or seek advice.

Lewis has been the "godfather of the NFL" for years, and you can see him having a career as a motivational speaker once he retires. You can click here to watch he said to his Ravens teammates following the AFC Championship Game loss at New England.

Jamison Hensley

ESPN Ravens reporter

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