Sunday, December 2, 2012
DeVito recalls Belcher from Maine days
By Rich Cimini
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Mike DeVito played with a heavy heart Sunday. He was a college teammate of Jovan Belcher at the University of Maine.
"From what I remember, he was a great person," DeVito said after the Jets' 7-6 win over the Chiefs at MetLife Stadium. "I'm so shocked by this situation."
DeVito said Rex Ryan addressed the murder-suicide Saturday morning with the team, but he didn't know the identity of the player at that point. DeVito went home and received a call from teammate Sione Po'uha, who told him Ryan wanted to see him back at the facility. DeVito turned back and received the news from the coach.
DeVito, who was two years ahead of Belcher at Maine, said he remembered Belcher coming up for his recruiting trip.
"I remember there was a lot on us to get him to come up to Maine," DeVito said, laughing. "You could see the type of player he was up there, and how tough he is playing in the league. Coming from Maine, I know first-hand how tough that is."
DeVito said he and Belcher weren't particularly close, but added, "My senior year, the defense was close. It's Maine. it's not like it's Ohio State. The team did the same things. We were always at the same parties, the same places. We were around each other a lot."
"He was a great player. He was a funny guy to be around," DeVito said. "One thing I'm disappointed with in myself, I haven't stayed in as close a contact with him after we left college, which is killing me because you always wish you could be involved in guys' lives. That's something I learned out of this whole experience."