Everybody needs a little motivational speech now and then to get the juices flowing, even folks who have won back-to-back national championships and feel like they're on top of the world.
That's why Alabama head coach Nick Saban brought in two highly respected guys from the football community to speak to this year's team.
Do Ray Lewis and Herm Edwards ring a bell?
"We had probably two of the best guest speakers the last two nights that our players could ever hope for: Ray Lewis and Herm Edwards," Saban said.
Forget the talent Alabama returns and the top-notch coaching staff, the Tide are likely to win another national title because they were blessed by a speech from Lewis.
Anybody who is familiar with the former All-Pro linebacker knows that he could motivate a rose to grow from the concrete. Just give him five minutes to talk to the sidewalk, and you will witness a magical moment.
Lewis was born to speak and inspire those who need it. Even though Alabama players are likely last on the list of who needs a little fire sparked under them, Saban thought both speeches were needed for off-the-field purposes as well, per the report.
I think the most important thing is the why part. This is a tremendous opportunity for us to … have people that can help develop a better attitude so that they have a better chance to be more successful in life, because they were involved in the program.
A lot of these things are life lessons. They're not just about football. And we have a lot of speakers relative to peer intervention, whether it's drugs, alcohol, agents, gambling, how to treat the opposite sex, macho man stuff getting into fights.
Edwards is also famous for providing interesting tidbits. Most known for reminding the media why the game of football is played, he also gave a speech to upcoming NFL rookies in hopes of keeping the young men on track.
Still, Alabama players were most excited about Lewis showing up, as linebacker C.J. Mosley said it was a big deal to hear from the future Hall of Famer, per the report.
Just his presence to be here ... people started whispering around like, 'I heard Ray Lewis is going to be here. I heard Ray Lewis is going to be here.' For me, that's one of my role models and one of my idols growing up as a linebacker and as a football player. Just to have him here was very exciting.
When you combine Edward's 18 years as a player/head coach and Lewis' two Super Bowl rings and 13 Pro Bowls, these two greats have seen it all. There's nothing better than getting valuable advice from those who have already walked similar paths.
It's just another step in getting Alabama focused for a potential three-peat.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!