Jamal Lewis talks Steeler "hate;'' Justin Tucker sings "Ave Maria''

Former star running back Jamal Lewis says the word "hate" is in the dialogue whenever the Ravens face the Steelers.


(Photo courtesy of Baltimore Ravens)

Talk of Fame Network

This being Christmas week, The Talk of Fame Network guys have a special gift of a show.

Not only do they chat with Hall of Fame semi-finalist Karl Mecklenburg about his candidacy and visit with former Ravens’ running back Jamal Lewis to discuss the rib-busting Ravens-Steelers rivalry; they bring you a command performance of “Ave Maria,’’ sung by Ravens’ kicker and opera star Justin Tucker at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption in Baltimore.

Tucker talks to our Talk of Fame host Clark Judge about how nervous he was that day and how he’d rather face a 50-yard field goal to win the Super Bowl than the anxiety born from singing in front of an overflow audience. You learn where that voice came from. as well, and what he intends to do with it after football is over.

Best of all, you’ll hear a remarkable rendition of “Ave Maria.’’

What you hear from Lewis is far from opera. The former 2,000-yard rusher explains what it was like to strap it on for a Ravens-Steelers confrontation. Long considered one of the game’s most bitter rivalries, Lewis describes it best as “an all-day Hit-a-Thon.’’

Lewis also explains why he’s banned yellow towels from his home and why Hines Ward’s feeling of “hate’’ fits when you're involved in the Baltimore-Pittsburgh series.

"It’s not too strong a word,’’ Lewis said.” It’s actually its best use.’’

As for Mecklenburg, he not only talks about his playing days as the most versatile linebacker in the NFL but also of his battle with post-concussive syndrome and why he chose football with all its painful problems over a career in medicine.

Clark joins Rick Gosselin and Ron Borges in a healthy debate of the week’s issues in the Two-Minute Drill, and the three of them leave not only some gifts under NFL trees but also re-gift a few packages NFL teams wish they’d never received this season (hello, DeMarco Murray).

Rick states the Hall-of-Fame argument for another Hog, Redskins’ former All-Pro tackle Joe Jacoby, and the guys visit with Bill Hancock, executive director of the College Football Playoff, to talk about the upcoming national championship battle involving Clemson, Alabama, Oklahoma and Goose’s alma mater, Michigan State.

In the history segment, they each offer their favorite Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Games. No surprise, it includes the "Ghost to the Post" double-overtime Raiders playoff win over the then Baltimore Colts, the 1971 Christmas Day game in which Ed Podolak piled up 350 total yards in the longest game in post-season history and the 1982 “Game No One Should Have Lost’’ between the Dolphins and the Chargers.

There’s all that and more available on over 80 radio stations around the country, on iTunes podcast, the TuneIn app or by simply going to talkoffamenetwork.com and clicking on the show’s logo.

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