Patriots

Patriots

Annapolis knows how to treat one of its favorite sons.

The Maryland capital will present New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick with a key to the city on March 14 at halftime of the Navy vs. Johns Hopkins men's lacrosse game, Navy announced Wednesday.

Belichick was born in Nashville but grew up in Annapolis, where his father, Stephen, was an assistant coach at Navy for three decades. Needless to say, he's excited about the upcoming ceremony, which will be led by Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley.

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"I am humbled and honored to be recognized by Mayor Buckley and the City of Annapolis," Belichick said in a statement. "I would like to thank Admiral Buck and Chet Gladchuk for allowing me to receive the key in Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.

"I loved the years I spent growing up in Annapolis and at the Naval Academy and I always look forward to returning. I am proud to be an Annapolitan!"

It takes a lot to get an exclamation point out of Belichick, but this honor pushes all of his favorite buttons.

Belichick has deep roots at Navy -- he helped his father break down Navy game film growing up and regularly attended games -- and a strong affinity for lacrosse: He played the sport at Wesleyan University, and all three of his children played lacrosse at the college level, as well. (Belichick's daughter, Amanda, is the head women's lacrosse coach at Holy Cross.)

 

The six-time Super Bowl champion head coach even has a connection to Navy's opponent: He's good friends with Johns Hopkins' head lacrosse coach, Dave Pietramala, and "guest coached" the team for a recent game.

It's worth noting that Belichick's big day comes two days before the NFL's legal tampering window for free agency opens on March 16. But not even negotiations with Tom Brady can stop Belichick from returning to his hometown for what should be one of his favorite days of the year.

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