Evan Habeeb-US PRESSWIRE
Being a Canes fan does not automatically mean blind allegiance to anyone who ever puts on the helmet. Period. This point was driven home well by APdirtybird in his previous FanPost. So why, then, is it so unbelievably hard for Canes fans to realize that sometimes it is better in the long run for a professional football player to lose a game?
Let's begin with Ray winning or losing this weekend. The game is at Denver, against Peyton Manning who has had extra time to prepare. Against a quarterback who has beaten the Ravens 9 straight times. Not to mention the fact that Ray doesn't play offense. He isn't a mediocre Joe Flacco, or the focal point of the offense that is Ray Rice. He plays defense, will be in only his second game back from a more or less season long injury, and tasked with stopping an offense who puts up at least 30 a game on the regular. Oh, and they haven't lost since like, week 4 or some shit. The odds are, regardless of if you are a Canes fan, a Baltimore fan, or just a casual NFL watcher, that Ray and the Ravens will lose. The deck is certainly stacked against him. So please, let's cut the "NO WAY BRO THEY'RE GONNA ROLL DENVER CAUSE RAY LEWIS IS BACK AND HES THE GREATEST CANE EVER" narrative. It doesn't work.
Second, let's examine exactly WHY Brody Logan decided to tell you that you should be cheering for Ray to lose this weekend. His point of view is that of a Hurricanes college football fan who is gearing up to watch how Al Golden will close out the 2013 recruiting season. Here in a week, Miami will be hosting the biggest recruiting visit day of the year. Almost every top Cane target, and some that are top overall targets, will be on campus that weekend to check things out. On top of that, a group of kids that are already committed will also be on hand to help show the targets a good time. One of those recruits is Ray Lewis III, Ray's son. Obviously, it's not a huge jump to think how awesome it would be to have Ray Lewis on campus during that visit. Sure, he couldn't show up to actually recruit for Miami, but being the parent of a recruit, he is allowed to accompany him on the OV, and his presence alone would definitely help these kids have a great time. Saying that we should hope Ray Lewis loses this weekend so that he could be on campus during those kid's visit is a very valid argument. It certainly does not warrant people saying that Brody's mindset makes him a disgrace because "why would you ever cheer for a pro-Cane to lose?" It's simple, maybe Brody isn't a Baltimore fan. Maybe he doesn't CARE if they win or lose. It is possible to hope that Ray gets another ring, but at the same time not mind if he loses and gets to come with his son to Miami on the 18th.
Third, one passionate guy on twitter pointed out that this was RAY LEWIS, and Brody should not use him as a recruiting tool, because why would you do that? Well, sir, you're missing the forest for the trees on this one. Every single former player is a recruiting tool, regardless of the institution. Do you think that Ray Lewis III would even consider Miami if his dad wasn't a former player there? How about Chickillo, or Kevin Olsen, or any of the other legacy guys that have come through simply because their dad or brother or uncle played for Miami? When you brag to people that the school you are a fan of has put more players into the NFL than anyone else, you're doing the same thing that Golden does when he pitches a recruit: piggy backs off of the football success of former players in order to get the recruit to want to come to Miami. That's called a recruiting tool. You don't get to single one instance out and condemn it just because you didn't like the post.
Lastly, I'm going to defend the fact that Brody decided to mention Atlanta and the murder trial that Ray was involved in. This was also mentioned on twitter in the manner of "you can't bring that up, you weren't there," which is a ridiculous argument. I'm fairly certain in saying that none of us were there, but the beauty of it is is that we have court documents and police reports and all of that media coverage that came with it. We know that Ray was there. We know that the clothing he wore that night has never been found. We know that he lied to the police, because he was charged and convicted of doing so and admitted that he did. We didn't HAVE to be there, because we know all of that. Brody simply made the statement that Ray helped cover up a murder. Based on what we know, he did. The fact that he used to wear the U logo doesn't change that. At best, he was a witness that helped cover up the crime of someone else. At worst, he helped or committed the crime himself, and was lucky enough to skirt the system and get out of it with an obstruction charge. Either way, what Brody said in the article was true, and there is zero reason for any of you to go all crybaby on him or us because it was brought up. It's part of Ray's legacy whether any of us like it or not, and you don't get to just sweep it under the rug and pretend it never happened.
In short, cheer for Ray to win, or cheer for Ray to lose. It doesn't matter what Brody or anyone else says, because it's up to you. Getting mad at a post that disagrees with your thinking is stupid, because the correct response is to say "I respect your opinion, but I will cheer for Ray to prove you wrong." If you get upset and curse, insult, or otherwise troll Brody or anyone else that shares his opinion simply because they suggested that Ray should lose, it's high time to put that solo cup of Kool-Aid down and take a cold shower.