In sports, the mental game is half the battle of any victory. You can train all you want, practice all you want, and run through every single play, but you still won't come out with the win if you and your teammates aren't mentally prepared. Great coaches all know this, from guys like Vince Lombardi to Jim Valvano. Being a great coach isn't just about managing personalities and laying out schemes, it's also about being a master motivator.
Of course, moments of great motivation in sports don't have to just come before, during, or after a game. They can happen in moments of honor or awards or vulnerability. As Kevin Durant's MVP acceptance speech proved to us last week, an individual award can also be a platform for recognizing an entire team, and the sacrifices made by loved ones for the good of another human being. It's times like these that sports inspire, motivate, and energize all of us.
So, since it's Ray Lewis' birthday today, and the former Baltimore Ravens All-Pro linebacker is one of the greatest emotional leaders in all of sports, we put together The Greatest Motivational Speeches in Sports History for you to sit through and enjoy. Feeling like you need an extra push to get to the weekend? Sit back, and take a listen. After hearing one of these, you'll feel like you can climb Everest.