Senior soccer player Ryan Brown (RB) is excited about the upcoming season and is ready to make a lasting image in his final season at Santa Clara. After rehabbing a groin injury from spring for most of the summer, Brown is getting ready to hit the training ground and get the season underway. We talked to the midfielder about his rehab, his favorite memories at Santa Clara, and who he thinks is going to win the World Cup in South Africa in 2010.
SCU: You grew up in New Jersey. Why did you want to come to Santa Clara and what is the best thing about going to school in California?
RB: I was recruited by a lot of schools on the East Coast, but when Coach Rast and Coach Yamamoto invited me out to check out the program, I really liked the weather, the team, and the school. One thing I do not miss about home is practicing outdoors in 20-degree weather and snow.
SCU: What has been the biggest achievement in your soccer career?
RB: Playing in the Elite 8 at Wake Forest in the 2006-07 College Cup. This is the last year for me and my fellow senior teammates to surpass that run. It was also great to have my grandpa from England make the game because I do not see him that often.
SCU: What has been your favorite memory on the field at Santa Clara?
RB: I actually have two favorite memories on Buck Shaw. The first is from freshman year when I scored on a blast from outside of 20 yards. The second and most valuable memory I had was in the 2007-08 season when we beat St. Mary's at home and every player got to step on the field and contribute. I was very proud of everyone because we all worked extremely hard.
SCU: What have you worked on this off season to prepare for your senior season? Are you playing on any teams during the summer?
RB:Right now I am currently rehabbing a groin injury from the spring. I have been weight training, long distance running, and dribbling. Most importantly though I have been doing physical therapy with the athletic training staff, and I am very thankful for their support.
SCU: What are your expectations for the team this year and how far do you think you can go in the post season?
RB: I have great expectations for our team this year in winning the WCC Conference and qualifying for the College Cup. We have a solid group of guys who are extremely technical and quick. The games should be very exciting this year because we have a lot of guys that like to pass, combine, and attack.
SCU: How would you describe your leadership on the team?
RB: I am the type of person that anyone can talk to; I like being there for all my teammates on and off the field and making them feel as comfortable as possible when they step on the field. I work hard and I also like to encourage my teammates to stay positive. It's very important to make sure your teammates have fun because at this level everyone is passionate and loves the game.
SCU: Who is your favorite soccer player and who would you say your game most resembles?
RB: Well my favorite all time player is Zinedine Zidane, his first touch gives him unlimited skill on the ball and he is a very humble leader. Even though I have mainly played on the Wing for SCU, I consider myself more of a Midfielder. The style of play I most resemble is a cross between Frank Lampard and Michael Essien. Because of my versatility, I like to attack a lot, but at the same time, I like to win the ball and start plays.
SCU: The World Cup takes place next summer in South Africa. What do you think of the American's chances and who do you think will take home the trophy?
RB: I think we have a good chance at performing very well in South Africa. We had great results in the Confederation Cup and we proved in the past that we can compete with top teams such as Brazil, Spain, Egypt and Portugal. My favorite team is France and I think they will take it all. I like their style, chemistry and diversity which I believe contributes a lot to their success and reputation.
SCU: What is your major? Do you know what you want to do after you graduate?
RB: My major is Finance but my dream as a child and today is to become a professional soccer player. Soccer is a big part of who I am.
Nickname: I have a lot of Nicknames but my favorite nickname is RB, my H.S coach Jack Weber and friends in New Jersey call me that.
Favorite musical artist: My parents are from Jamaica so I really like Bob Marley. I also like Kanye West.
Favorite Team: My favorite team is Arsenal in the English Premiere League, they have terrific ball movement; I really like Aston Villa too, because my family in England supports them a lot.
Favorite movie: Collateral with Jamie Foxx and Tom Cruise.
Favorite vacation spot: My favorite vacation spot is England. I really enjoy spending time with my grandfather, uncles, many cousins and riding the trains to see soccer games.