Senior Ray Holmes has proven that being a manager means being a real member of the team. He started helping out the RedHawks during eighth grade at St. John Fisher. The son, nephew and cousin of Marist alumni, Ray knew Marist was the right choice for him.
Ray Holmes (center) with his mom and dad on senior night.
Now, in the early days of November, and in the heat of football playoffs, Ray is an old pro in the football world, and team members value his work and dedication so much they elected him as one of the team captains. He was shocked. When Coach Pat Dunne '98 announced Ray’s name he didn’t know how to respond. It epitomized the family atmosphere of the football program. “It made feel like a part of the team,” he said. “It meant a lot to me.”
Coach Dunne said he wasn't surprised players saw Ray a team member and captain. "The time and effort Ray puts in is as much as any other member of our program," Dunne said. "People don't realize how much time he gives to this team on top of his academic responsibilities. He's like having another coach on staff. He is so valuable to everything we are doing."
His day to day tasks include filming all practices and games, and making sure all players have Hudl accounts to watch film, analyze plays and track highlight clips. He also oversees all equipment and jerseys. His tasks often mean he’s helping before and after game time, along with being there for every moment of the weekly showdowns.
Ray says he continued to work as a manager because of the family feel of the team—the brotherhood. “They were so welcoming,” he explained. “I grew up as an only child and they became older brothers. They helped shape who I became in high school.”
Not surprisingly, he says the best part of being on the team is winning, and the worst is saying goodbye to the seniors at the last game of the season.
Ray hopes to continue his management career at the college level where scholarship money or stipends are available. He’s looking at Valparaiso, Miami of Ohio, Ball State, Indiana University, and University of Louisville.
Ray says he’s feeling good about this weekend. The RedHawks will host Barrington Saturday at 7pm in the second round of state playoffs. He challenges his fellow students to show up and make noise. “The Rowdies’ section plays a big part in us winning.”