Despite growing up in the shadow of
Notre Dame football, Ryan was introduced to Division III at a young
age. His father was a Wabash College graduate, and Ryan still
remembers once being sandwiched in the bleachers by a small, yet
boisterous crowd in the visitors' section at Albion College in
Michigan. That was a quarter-century ago; amid proud and energetic
fans, it was his first encounter with D-III football.
Ryan followed his dad's footsteps, enrolling at Wabash and there cultivating his early efforts in journalism as a writer, editor and photographer. Those efforts were accelerated after his career as a cross country and track athlete was ended by recurring leg injuries. He graduated in 2000 and went on to edit and write at metropolitan newspapers in Indiana and Virginia, finally deciding to settle down on a small farm in Southwest Virginia with his wife, a Ferrum College alumna. In recent years, Ryan has won state awards for both his reporting and headline writing.
Ryan is D3football's Senior Editor and former longtime Mid-Atlantic Columnist, has worked on all but one of the preseason Kickoff publications, has been on the air and behind the camera for the championship Stagg Bowl in Salem and has taken photos at the Final Four for D3hoops. He's also on the selection staff for the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year award.
Traveling around the East Coast has, over the past couple of years, connected him with scores of fans, players and coaches. He's also been in his native Indiana to see the Monon Bell rivalry game between Wabash and DePauw every November since 1996. But no matter where he's landed on a given Saturday, the fact that programs at this level emphasize the "student" as well as the "athlete" makes him appreciate what he does and why these students take the field.
Follow him on Twitter: @NewsTipps