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Gillette recruit has Super interest in Bowl - Gillette News Record: College

Gillette recruit has Super interest in Bowl

Gillette College recruit will cheer on cousin

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Posted: Friday, February 1, 2013 12:00 am | Updated: 11:33 am, Tue Nov 5, 2013.

Trying to find Baltimore Ravens' apparel in Gillette is like waiting for a day without wind in Wyoming. It's few and far between.

It makes no difference to Gillette College basketball recruit Rickey Suggs Jr. When he sits down to watch the Ravens play the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday, he'll have a vested interest.

Ravens' linebacker Terrell Suggs is his cousin.

The son of Rickey Sr. and Starr Suggs didn't bother putting in a request for Super Bowl tickets. Rickey is just another fan, but he will be watching family on the NFL's biggest stage.

"In some ways, watching football is weird because that's my cousin playing on national TV," said Rickey, who has transferred to Gillette College from Mayville State University in Mayville, N.D.

"When he first came into the league, it was amazing. But I'm used to it now," he said. "I'm more of a basketball fan, but I'll be watching the Super Bowl like the rest of the fans."

Fans in St. Paul, Minn., have come to relate the Suggs name on a jersey with athletic achievement. Rickey Suggs Sr. was a former Mr. Basketball runner-up at St. Paul Central High School in 1980 and later played in the Canadian Football League with the Edmonton Eskimos when Warren Moon was quarterback.

Terrell is the son of his brother, Donald Suggs Sr., and the two families are close. To have a member of the Suggs' clan playing in New Orleans is a special moment, said Starr Suggs.

Terrell was selected with the 10th overall pick in the 2003 NFL Draft by the Ravens and is the team's all-time leader in sacks with 821?2. The five-time Pro Bowler was the NFL's defensive player of the year in 2011.

He was the key in the Ravens' win over the Denver Broncos in the divisional round game with two sacks of quarterback Peyton Manning. The Ravens beat New England for Terrell's first AFC Championship title and Sunday's big game is his first Super Bowl.

"The Suggs are such a great athletic family, but Terrell took it to the next level," Starr said. "It's unbelievable that he's reached this status, but he's always been a hard worker, as well as a good athlete.

"We'll root for all of the Ravens, not just Terrell. We love Ray Lewis and since he is retiring, we're really excited he's playing in the Super Bowl. This is an exciting time for everyone."

Terrell and Rickey Jr. are 12 years apart, but Rickey remembers his cousin from family functions.

"He likes to joke a lot," he said. "He's really down to earth and easy to talk to. When he's away from football, he's like a totally different person."

"I had dinner with Terrell after the San Diego game," Starr recalled. "When he's in his normal clothes, he's like the rest of the family. He's just a nice kid."

Rickey Jr. is another link in the Suggs' athletic history. He helped lead Woodbury (Minn.) High School to a 24-5 record his senior season and was named the team's most valuable player. He will join the Pronghorns' basketball team next season.

But the question still remains. Who is the best basketball player between them?

"I think I can take him," Rickey said with a smile. "He's bigger than me, but I got hops and I'm quicker than him."

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