Leigh Langley Davis is the wife of ESPN College GameDay host and play-by-play commentator Rece Davis. They have been married for 25 years and have two grown children together.
They met while they were working at the same television station, WRBL-TV, in her hometown of Columbus, Georgia. Davis says that he pretended not to know how to use a fax machine as an excuse to talk to Langley.
Here’s what you need to know.
1. Leigh Langley Grew Up in Georgia & Attended Auburn University
Leigh Langley grew up in Columbus, Georgia. She graduated from Columbus High School in 1979.
Both Langley and her future husband traveled to Alabama for college, but at rival schools. Davis went to the University of Alabama and Langley graduated from Auburn University.
For those keeping track, the Alabama Crimson Tide has the edge in the rivalry. In 82 games played against each other, Alabama has won 46 games to Auburn’s 36, and secured victory in the 2018 matchup as well. That particular gameday must be an interesting affair in the Davis household.
The family told Sports Illustrated that when their son, Christopher, was young, Langley taught him to chant “War Eagle!” and indoctrinated him as an Auburn fan. Their daughter, Elizabeth, roots for Alabama.
2. Leigh Langley & Rece Davis Met While Working at the Same Television Station in Georgia; He Asked Her How to Use a Fax Machine as an Excuse to Talk to Her
Leigh Langley worked as a sales representative at WRBL-TV, a CBS affiliate in Columbus, Georgia, after graduating from college. She told the Ledger-Enquirer in 2015 that at the time, it was her “dream job.”
Davis was hired by WRBL-TV as a sports reporter. He became the weekend news anchor and eventually promoted to sports director.
Davis explained to SB Nation in 2015 that after arriving at the Columbus station, he worked up an excuse to talk to Langley by pretending he didn’t know how to work the fax machine. He needed to submit a press credential to cover a game against Auburn. Davis asked for Langley’s help, and they likely struck up a conversation about Auburn, which was Langley’s alma mater.
3. Rece Davis & Leigh Langley Have Been Married for 25 Years & She is Credited With Pushing Him to Pursue a Career at ESPN
The timing could have been considered a bit shaky for the beginning of Rece Davis’ and Leigh Langley’s marriage. He asked her to marry him in August of 1993. The next month, he accepted a job at WJRT-TV in Flint, Michigan. Langley waited until they were officially married before moving up north as well. They tied the knot on December 13, 1993.
Their time in Flint turned out to be temporary, as Davis started attracting more attention for his work as a sports anchor. Langley told the Ledger-Enquirer, a newspaper in her hometown of Columbus, Georgia, that her husband began receiving phone calls from various TV stations all over the country.
But Langley pushed him to focus on the one place he truly wanted to go: ESPN in Bristol, Connecticut. With Langley’s support, Davis sent his resume reel to a talent coach at ESPN named Andrea Kirby. Davis was hired in February of 1995. The family has been in Connecticut ever since.
Davis and Langley celebrated 25 years of marriage in 2018. Davis shared the above photo of his wife and wrote in the caption, “Still lights up the room for me after 25 years. Makes me a better man. Silver anniversary and still madly in love.”
4. Leigh Langley & Chris Davis Have Two Grown Children, Chris & Elizabeth
Leigh Langley and Chris Davis raised their two children, Chris and Elizabeth, in Avon. It is a suburb of Hartford, Connecticut located about 20 miles from ESPN’s headquarters in Bristol.
Chris plays baseball at Princeton. According to his team bio, Chris is currently a junior and had 33 starts in the 2018 season. In high school, he was a team captain on his baseball team, played football and served as student body president. He was also a member of the jazz band.
Daughter Elizabeth is now about 19 years old and lives in the New York City area. On her Twitter handle, she frequently praises her brother for his baseball play at Princeton, calling him a star. According to a 2015 article in AL.com, Elizabeth enjoys theater and acting.
5. Leigh & Rece Davis Neatly Lost Their Son in 2017 After He Suffered a Collided With A Teammate on the Baseball Diamond; The Impact Ruptured His Spleen
Leigh Langley and Rece Davis described one of the most harrowing ordeals their family has ever gone through to Sports Illustrated in 2018. Their son, Christopher, collided with a teammate during a baseball game in Maryland on March 18, 2017. He stayed in the game and didn’t initially think much of it. But his side continued to hurt, and after the game, Chris looked up the symptoms of a ruptured spleen.
A few hours later, when the team was at dinner in Washington, D.C., Chris complained that he felt dizzy. Leigh and Rece took their son to the hospital, where his condition deteriorated. He began to lose his vision and his hearing. Chris’ earlier guess turned out to be correct; he had ruptured his spleen and was bleeding heavily. The first hospital did not have the right equipment to treat it, so he was taken by ambulance to Washington Hospital Medical Center.
Leigh rode in the ambulance with him while Rece and their daughter drove in another car. Leigh recounted later that the nurse kept urging the driver to go faster because she was concerned that Chris would lose too much blood. Chris was rushed into surgery and required six pints of blood. A second surgery was required to remove the spleen entirely.
When Chris returned to Princeton, he was not yet back to 100%. They told Sports Illustrated that Leigh got an apartment nearby to help him, including carrying his bag to class. The family explained that Chris has to be very cautious if he feels sick; the spleen is critical in fighting infections and he no longer has that organ.