A Chat With Lee Roy SelmonDecember 11th, 2009
Joe was treated this week to a man-to-legend chat with Hall of Famer and restaurateur Lee Roy Selmon, the former Bucs defensive end.
What an honor!
Joe: Reflecting back on your induction into the Bucs’ new Ring of Honor in November, how do you feel about the experience?
Lee Roy Selmon: It really means an awful lot. It was one of the most exciting experiences in my liftime, simply because it reflects all of the pepole that have been so supportive in my life — my wife, children, family back in Oklahoma and teammates and the Buccaneers organization. Of course, I can’t leave out the fans. It was a wonderful collaboration. The Glazer family brought all those people to mind with a wealth of gratitude and appreciation together and with humility. …I’m still humbled.
Joe: In the early 1990s, Ricky Bell, John McKay, Doug Williams and you were inducted into the Buccaneers “Krewe of Honor” and had some in-stadium recognition at the old Tampa Stadium. How is the new Ring of Honor different? And do you recall the your Krewe of Honor induction?
Selmon:I do remember the Krewe of Honor. The Krewe of Honor was different. It was more of a just a ceremony of who was coming in and without the fanfare and families and all of that. It was nothing like the fanfare of the throwback game we just had against Green Bay and bringing back the 1979 team. When we had the Krewe of Honor, of course, the organization didn’t have the history it has now. So I guess the current ownership took a look at that and what other teams are doing and wanted to bring forward for the organization this new Ring of Honor tradition. …I’m glad they made the decison to connect the past the present and future. It’s very important to connect with history.
Joe: There’s been endless speculation about who should and shouldn’t be in the Ring of Honor. I’m not going to ask you to give names, but what are your thoughts?
Selmon: I think a lot of folks have certainly expressed good ideas. It’s important to people, now that it’s part of the history of the Bucs. There are many players and coaches that are deserving. I’m sure the Glazers and Buccaneers will make those decisions. The fans have their intputs and favorites. You think back on Ricky Bell and Doug Williams, and Paul Gruber and a number of folks. There’s a very deserving list.
Joe: Your restaurant chain, Lee Roy Selmon’s, has transformed into a real haven for sports fans and all lovers of fabulous food. The slogan at Selmon’s is, “Cheer Hard. Eat Well.” What kind of sports fan are you throughout the year?
Selmon: I’m a pretty good sports fan. I admire all athletes, golfers, hockey players, baseball, football, basketball players. I realize it takes an awful lot of work for those men and women to reach the level of talent. …When I’m watching sports, that’s what I look for most, is admiring the talent levels. I’m kind of a year-round sports fan. Certainly at Selmon’s, that’s what you’ll see, a good amout of varying sports. …Basketball is coming on-line now and I enjoy that.
Joe: Do you have any players you most enjoy watching?
Selmon: Dwayne Wade in basketball what he does from the guard position, his exciting plays and drives to the bucket. He’s exceptionally talented. LeBron James, of course, is in a league of his own. I enjoyed watching the Yankees win their World Series this year. You see the athletes there.
Tomorrow, Joe will share Part II of his interview with Lee Roy Selmon. Mr. Selmon will talk a bit about the current Buccaneers and his passion for unmatched hospitality at Lee Roy Selmon’s.