Ravens Owner Bisciotti "Relishing" Team's Run To Super Bowl But Prefers To Avoid Spotlight
There is "little question" that STEVE BISCIOTTI is "relishing his first run to the Super Bowl as the Ravens' principal owner," according to a front-page piece by Childs Walker of the Baltimore SUN. Bisciotti in his 13 years with the team has "rarely granted more than a few interviews a year." As the "media glare turns toward him in the days leading up to the Super Bowl in New Orleans, those who know him say they would be shocked if the bright lights brought out a flashier, more self-aggrandizing Bisciotti." He has filled his box at M&T Bank Stadium "with family and close friends rather than starlets and tycoons, and he regularly asks television producers not to train their cameras on him during games." Bisciotti often is described as "one of the best owners in the NFL in large part because he doesn't assert his personality or opinions" over those of coach JOHN HARBAUGH or GM OZZIE NEWSOME. Ravens President DICK CASS said, "He just appreciates how hard they work and how hard it is to win even one game in the NFL. But he's enjoying this tremendously. It's really a validation of how he's run the team." Harbaugh said of Bisciotti after the AFC Championship game, "I think the words 'I love you,' came out of his mouth to a lot of different people. That's kind of who he is, the type of leader he is. He's the kind of guy that he wants you to know that he cares about you. He's proud of us. Like any boss ... They put their arm around you and tell you good job -- that means a lot" (Baltimore SUN, 1/31).
RELATIONSHIP BUILDING: Fox NFL analyst and former Ravens coach BRIAN BILLICK said of Bisciotti, "In a very positive way, he is engaged. He built his fortune on relationships and is very much about that. It's not a 'I'm in charge, do what I say' mentality. It's an 'I don't care if you're the ball boy or the head coach, we've got to create partnerships here.' He hires people he trusts and then keeps a purposefully, painfully low profile. He never wants to make it about him." In N.Y., Judy Battista notes those at the Ravens who have worked with Bisciotti said that he "has a similar gentle touch with his employees." Billick said that Bisciotti would "come to the team's training facility about once a week, but was just as apt to talk with the receptionist as he was with" Billick or Newsome. Bisciotti is "not active in league matters, sometimes skipping meetings" and sending Cass in his place. He also has "stepped out of owners' meetings, shutting the door behind him, to smoke one of his cigars" (N.Y. TIMES, 1/31).