SOSA Staff Report
WHEELERSBURG — When the football is in Hunter Ruby’s hands, there’s a chance he takes it to the house every single time.
Ruby, with a mix of speed, agility and discipline, was a catalyst to Wheelersburg’s playoff push this past season. And he made multiple trips to the end zone along the way.
This past week, he transformed his dream of playing college football into a reality. Via Twitter, Ruby announced his commitment to Wittenberg University, where he’ll suit up this coming fall.
“The reason I chose Wittenberg is because I was impressed with the coaching staff, facilities, and the overall program tradition,” Ruby said. “I want to be a part of that tradition. My parents have played a huge role in the process by taking me on numerous college visits. My entire family has been behind me and have encouraged and prayed for me during this process.”
As a senior, Ruby did a little bit of everything. He rushed 25 times for 191 yards, caught 36 passes for 245 yards and netted 113 yards on seven kickoff returns. He was an all-conference, all-district and all-state selection.
But put aside the numbers and individual accolades, Ruby’s most important contribution to the Pirates was his leadership.
With him and the rest of the senior class leading the way, Wheelersburg finished 8-4 overall, won yet another SOC II championship and clinched their sixth straight playoff berth.
“My teammates are like my brothers. They have always been supportive of me,” Ruby said. “We want to see each other succeed and be successful, even into our next big step in life. My coaches have groomed by, beginning with my uncle, Todd Ruby. He coached me at the freshman level. Coach [Rob] Woodward has instilled in me the desire to be the best and to always give me my best. I was fortunate to have numerous incredible coaches to help me.”
As he heads to Wittenberg, he’ll be joining a program that boasts of five NCAA National Championships and 193 All-Americans.
Last season, the Tigers finished 7-3 with losses coming to Wash. & Jeff., Wabash and Denison.
“I am looking forward to continuing to grow as an athlete while being a part of an incredible program and help continue to improve that program,” Ruby said. “I am excited to work hard and represent in Southern Ohio at the collegiate level.”
He won’t be the only Ruby doing so, either.
The Ruby family is spread out across the state and will be representing their home region at each destination.
“Being a college athlete means a lot to me,” Ruby said. “My mom was a college tennis player, my cousin, Ellie Ruby, is a college athlete at Mount Vernon, and my cousin, Lane Ruby, is going to IWU to play football. It’s exciting for me to think about this level. I’m so thankful that God has given me an athletic gift. I know that if it wasn’t for God’s grace and the abilities He has blessed me with, this opportunity wouldn’t have even been possible. All glory goes to God.”