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Ray Lewis Memories: Duane Starks

June 20, 2018

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.

Duane Starks
As told to Glenn Clark

Duane Starks and Ray Lewis were teammates at the University of Miami. Starks played cornerback for the Ravens from 1998-2001.

I used to do a charity event every year. So I ended up going out and buying a jet ski because I used to have a jet ski party. Ray came down, and he's like, "Man, I'm going to buy one, too." So he came in and bought a jet ski. First day out on the jet skis, we're doing tricks, and then Ray tries to do a trick and wrecks his jet ski on the first day. He tried to do one of those hook slides and ran into another jet ski. He got off that jet ski and never got back on. He left the jet ski with me, so I ended up with two jet skis for the price of one.

We were teammates at Miami. We played the 1995 season together. I ended up redshirting that year, but we were on the same team playing and practicing together. And my rookie year, once I got my contract done, Ray took me in. Ray made me his roommate, and it's great that he did that because I held out for two weeks. So while they were all practicing, Ray was like, "Nah, I don't want any other roommate, I got my man coming." So when I got there, he just took me in and we were roommates throughout the rest of training camp.

It meant a lot to me because he gave me a lot of praise when I was in practice and definitely spoke up for me, being that I was coming from the University of Miami. I felt like I had something to prove, not only to myself, but I didn't want to let him down. He's doing the trash talking for me; I don't have to say a word. I just get behind him and do what I've got to do. That was motivation in itself, just having a guy like that.

To read all 52 memories of No. 52, visit

Ray Lewis (multi, Journey To Canton, HOF issue)

Photo Credit: Sabina Moran/PressBox 

Issue 245: June/July 2018