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The Caw: Parents Name Their Kids After Ravens


What's the ultimate sign of being a hardcore Ravens fan?

Attending every game, even on the road? A tattoo? Pulling a Prince and painting your house purple?

I'd say naming your kids after Ravens players ranks high on the list.

That's what fans and friends Stephanie Hofer and Garry Green each did last year.

Hofer hails from Silver Spring, Md., and became a Ravens devotee when she signed up for the Marching Ravens in 1998. She played the piccolo for a year before entering the Marine Corps.

Growing up minutes away from College Park, Md., she was also a big University of Maryland fan. So when the Ravens drafted Terps wide receiver Torrey Smith in 2011, she was stoked.

Later Hofer learned she was pregnant, and she started brainstorming potential name ideas for her baby and landed on a combination of Smith and Ray Lewis. As she said, you can't be a Ravens fan and not love the name Ray.

Hofner was watching the Ravens play the Steelers on Thanksgiving night when she started having contractions. She left for the hospital in the third quarter and delivered 12 hours later.

"The joke is I got a little excited during the football game and it was time for her to come out," Hofer said.

If the baby was a boy, she was going to name him "Torrey Ray." When she was welcomed by a girl, she tweaked the name to be "Tori Rae."

"My family and friends weren't surprised," Hofer said. "As soon as I told them what her name was, they were like, 'Really? You really did that?' As soon as I put her name on Facebook, most of them weren't shocked."

Smith, who is about to become a father himself, is flattered.

@Ravens I have to meet Tori Rae!! — Torrey Smith (@TorreySmithWR) April 3, 2014

Green, who is friends with Hofer through the Marine Corps, and his wife, Kim, made a wager on Super Bowl XLVII to determine their baby's name.

Green, who grew up in Baltimore, has been a Ravens fan from the start. His father worked Colts and Orioles games at old Memorial Stadium, so the affinity runs in the family. Kim, however, is from a 49ers family, even though she grew up in San Diego.

Whoever's team won Super Bowl XLVII got naming rights of the child, and it was understood that Garry would be selecting a player to name his kid after.

"He was going to be Ray Lewis. That's who I was thinking about during that time," Garry said. "But when Jacoby Jones ran that return back for a touchdown, I just stood up and shouted, 'His name will be Jacoby!'"

With witnesses on hand, Kim honored the bet and Garry stuck with it too. Jacoby was born on Aug. 14, 2013, the day before the Ravens' preseason home opener. Jacoby came home from the hospital just in time to put on a Ravens onesie and watch the game with his father.

"He watched every single game with me," Garry said. "Didn't miss a game; he was there for the ups and downs this season. It's our little tradition."

But how does Kim feel about her son being named after a Raven?

"She likes it now," Garry said. "Ever since that HarBowl, it's always been a little contentious in our house. But she takes it out on me, not him."

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