Boy, That Coach Can Teach


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What type of teachers were your favorite teachers? Were they funny? Did they make your subject fun? Were they experts in their subject? Maybe, they took a personal interest in you. Maybe, they were just really good at explaining things, so you could understand. Whatever the case, great TEACHERS, are INVALUABLE!


Coach Ryan demonstrating technique at OSU wrestling camp

One coach that SportsLeader has had the privilege of working with is, Tom Ryan, Head Wrestling Coach at Ohio State University. Coach Ryan wrestled at Iowa twenty years ago under legendary wrestling great, Dan Gable, earning the National Runner-Up at 158 lbs. in 1991. And although, Coach Ryan does many, many things well, I would say one of the best things he does is instruct....HE IS A GREAT TEACHER!


Being a great teacher is no easy thing! But despite, running a HUGE program, Coach Ryan still finds the time to be that GREAT teacher. How does he do it? For one, Tom is constantly reading, studying, and learning more about wrestling. He is a real student of the sport! But he doesn't just stop there, Coach Ryan takes what he learns, thinks about it, and applies the parts he thinks can help his wrestlers in HIS wrestling room every day. Then through constant evaluation, he improves on the delivery. This is one of the constants in the OSU wrestling room, CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT in everything. Coach Ryan also travels extensively throughout the Midwest conducting wrestling clinics through Premier Technique wrestling camps, TEACHING, TEACHING, TEACHING! Since, January of 2013, he has conducted over 15 clinics, traveling to area schools, sharing his skills and INSTRUCTION. Pretty selfless for a NCAA National Coach of the Year award winner! Check him out, teaching single-leg defense at his camps(I promise the link will work this time!You can see Urban's speech here too, I've fixed that too. LOL!)

Coach Ryan instruction video 
Coach Urban Meyer talk from last week's story at Spire Institute


2x National Champion-Logan Steiber showing off the guns! Logan has two more years to win 2 more!

Coach Ryan believes WHOLEHEARTEDLY in character education. He sees everyday, the many temptations that distract his athletes from reaching their potential. These distractions are real and dangerous to ALL his wrestlers, regardless of how successful they were in high school. Therefore, Coach Ryan has implemented consistent virtue talks with his team, incorporating virtues such as humility, sacrifice and self-discipline. In fact, one of the reasons, Coach Ryan and his staff, feel OSU wrestler Logan Steiber(2x National Champion) has had so much success on the mat is the type of character and faith Logan exhibits off the mat in the classroom and his everyday life.


NCAA qualifer Ian Paddock showing campers technique at OSU wrestling camp.

Without a doubt, Coach Ryan and Ohio State University are drawing some of the best wrestlers in the country to Columbus. But Coach Ryan knows being the best is much more than just wrestling. Great character, great parents, great grades, great choices EVERYDAY, are just as necessary ingredients to success. A character program that emphasizes recognizing potential obstacles to that success and a character program helping to make mature young men, make GREAT choices..... is a MUST...especially in today's world. And when you talk to Coach Ryan or listen to him at a clinic, it is obvious that THIS INSTRUCTION is even more important to him then the instruction of executing even the best wrestling moves.


If you were to walk into the Ohio State wrestling room, you certainly would be impressed by the level of instruction provided by Coach Ryan and his assistant coaches. I'm there often, and I am always amazed by how great is the teaching. But the greatest genius of what Tom Ryan does, in my opinion, is NOT his specific wrestling technique, BUT it is how he is not afraid to teach 18-23 year old wrestlers the REAL values in LIFE.

Boy, that BROTHER of mine, TOM RYAN, can TEACH!

And so can ALL of US, if we take the time to make teaching THE priority in our lives...just like Coach Ryan.