Report: Lewis to join ESPN

Report: Lewis to join ESPN
January 3, 2013, 11:30 am
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Well that didn't take long.

Less than 24 hours after announcing he would retire at the end of this season, Ray Lewis has apparently already landed a job for next season. Sports Illustrated is reporting that Lewis is putting the finishing touches on a multiyear deal to join ESPN as an analyst and will have a significant role on the network's Monday Night Countdown program.

As with other ESPN talent, Lewis could also be featured on ESPN radio and other programming.

The position would seem to align nicely with Lewis' stated desire to watch his son, Ray Lewis III, play collegiately at the University of Miami beginning next season.

At his news conference on Wednesday when he announced his retirement, Lewis stressed that time with his children, and the time to watch his son play at Miami, was a major factor in his decision. He implied that any future plans would require the flexibility to be at Miami games on Saturdays. That would make the ESPN Monday night show a much more attractive option than the Sunday morning football shows across the various networks.

"I always promised my son that if he got a full-ride scholarship, Daddy was going to be there," Lewis said on Wednesday. "And I can't miss that."

SI.com said no formal announcement from Lewis or from ESPN is expected before the end of the season. SI.com also noted that executives from all the major networks identified Lewis as having outstanding potential as a broadcast analyst when his playing days were over.

At his news conference, Lewis mentioned no specifics about his future plans, saying only that, "It's a new chapter that I've already pre-planned out. There are a lot of things waiting that are lined up. I have a lot of great people I'm working with."