A Destrehan High School legend was immortalized over the weekend in Louisiana sports lore, as Ed Reed was inducted into the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame Saturday (June 24).
Reed, a native of St. Rose, played 12 years in the NFL — 11 of those with the Baltimore Ravens — and immediately began racking up honor after honor after he was selected in the first round of the 2002 NFL Draft. Reed’s interception total of 64 ranks seventh all-time and he added nine others in his 15 career playoff games. He was a five-time All Pro and nine-time Pro Bowler. He was selected as NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2004 and helped propel his Ravens to a Super Bowl championship in 2013—fittingly, that game was played in New Orleans.
Perhaps best known for his nose for both the ball and the end zone, Reed’s 1,590 career yards on interception returns rank as the most in NFL history, outpacing former record-holder Rod Woodson’s previous mark by more than 100 yards. He returned seven pickoffs for touchdowns.
At Destrehan, Reed starred in football, basketball, baseball and track and field. His efforts caught the eye of the University of Miami, where he was a two-time All-American and was a cornerstone on the Hurricanes’ 2001 National Champion squad. His 21 interceptions at the school were another school record.
Reed remains active with DHS, sponsoring the school’s annual Ed Reed jamboree and hosting a yearly football camp there.
Destrehan head coach Stephen Robicheaux, who coached Reed as defensive coordinator at Destrehan, was in attendance at the ceremony, and as proud as he was of Reed the player, it’s Reed the person who earns Robicheaux’s most glowing praise.
“It’s good to see him in that moment, recognized by his peers here in Louisiana,” Robicheaux said. “That’s what he said was so special about it, it was Louisiana people, the Louisiana Hall of Fame. It gave everyone a chance to see what kind of person he really is. People were so in awe by his speech and what he represents I’m so thrilled that I can be a part of his life.”
Robicheaux said that though Reed has achieved stardom, he remains humble and committed to his home region.
“I’m just amazed every time I’m around him, just a person who really, really wants to make other people happy and to help out where he can,” Robicheaux said. “It says a lot about a guy who can be anywhere he wants to be, and he chooses to come down here and spend time with kids.”
He added Reed’s speech at the ceremony was one he’ll always remember, as will so many others in attendance.
“It was special,” Robicheaux said. “When you see a guy of his caliber talk about the people who helped him throughout his life, who helped make him the man he is … when you see a grown man up there, just really pouring his heart out, you know it’s genuine. You could tell it was really heartfelt, and that the person he truly is came out.”