The University of Regina Rams have made a big signing in Yorkton. Riley Richards signed with a full scholarship with the Rams.
“This is huge,” said Richards. “Not very often guys get an opportunity to get a scholarship like this. This is just mind-boggling, unbelievable.”
While signing with the team, Richards said that he wouldn’t be there on his own, and thanks the coaches and players of the Raider Gridders.
“I wouldn’t be able to be at this point if it weren’t for [coach Jason Boyda and my boys on the Yorkton team that got me to this point.”
Coach Steve Bryce with the Regina Rams said that the first thing that caught their eye was his size, since Richards is 6’5”. But beyond his size, he’s athletic for such a big player and moves very well.
“Just watching him play on film, he finishes blocks.”
Richards is also a defending provincial wrestling champion, which was another point in his favor, said Bryce, because it showed his competitive drive.
“It tells you how competitive he is and his natural drive.”
While his athleticism, drive and size were what got Richards on the radar of the Rams, it was meeting Richards that had Bryce convinced.
“What seals the deal is you get to meet him and his parents for a meal and he’s a great young man. He’s well brought up, he’s going to be a great fit in our locker room for us.”
Also helping his case were Richards’ wins as a player on the Raider Gridders, who took the provincial championship this year, as well as his success in wrestling, where he also won a provincial championship.
“We like to bring in the champions because they help develop the culture on our team too.”
Coach Jason Boyda said that while Richards is going to be missed in the locker room and on the field, he’s proud to see how Richards’ hard work has paid off, and he notes that football opens a lot of doors, including scholarships.
“We want to have as many kids to have the opportunity to play post-secondary football.”
While they are sad to see him go, Boyda said that it’s a wonderful day because he’s continuing his playing career, and while championships are the goal for the team, setting up players for success beyond school is their goal for individuals.
Richards is joining a strong team, Bryce said, and they’re confident they’re going to do well in the coming season.
“I think we’re going to have a great team this year. We’ve got a ton of talent coming back, we beat two top ten teams in the country in our last two games last year and almost everybody’s coming back so we think we’re going to go very deep this year. Our goal is to win the Hardy Cup this year.”
On the academic side of things, Richards is entering the Education program. He said that his eventual goal is to return to Yorkton as a teacher and coach. Also a wrestler, Richards would like to be the guy to bring back the YRHS wrestling program once he’s done his football career.