School: Owen J. Roberts High School
Athlete: Jimmy Rollins
Movie: Anchor Man
TV Show: The Office
By DAVE KURTZ
BUCKTOWN – Ryan Megay could probably perform in the Cirque du Soleil, considering the juggling skills he’s developed over the years.
Footballs, basketballs, baseballs, schoolbooks – everything seems to be up in the air simultaneously. It’s been nearly impossible to keep it all from hitting the floor along with the social and family commitments, work schedules and daily classroom responsibilities the Owen J. Roberts High School senior has been trying to balance for most of his young life.
“It takes a great deal of time management to do it all,” said Megay, the featured male athlete on pac-10sports.com. “I try not to watch too much TV and get my homework done. Playing three sports, it gets a little hectic. But I like staying busy.”
Ryan, the son of David and Holly Megay, started getting busy when football practice began back in August. The starting quarterback for the Wildcats - in charge of a run-oriented offense – Megay did a lot of handing off to record-setting tailback Ryan Brunfield in 2010, by his own admission.
But when opposing defenses loaded the box to slow Brumfield, Megay made the necessary adjustments and showed the ability to hit open receivers in stride. Case in point – a 55-20 conquest of Upper Perkiomen when Megay converted 5 of 6 passing attempts for 166 yards and three touchdowns.
The Wildcats went on to earn a share of the PAC-10 football title with Boyertown, and the cerebral signal-caller was a big reason why.
“I did a lot of handing off to Ryan Brumfield,” said Megay, who also played safety. “My favorite sport is probably basketball, but I had the most fun with football. We had come close to winning a championship the past couple of seasons, falling short of Pottsgrove. But this year was great. Our whole offensive line was strong all year.”
With the footballs, helmets and pads finally in the storage bin, Megay continued the juggling act, transitioning to hoops as soon as the grid season ended with a 49-17 rout of neighborhood rival Pottstown in the annual Thanksgiving Day clash.
“My senior season started off with a bang with football,” said Megay, who has somehow found the time to do clerical work in his father’s law office, help a disabled neighbor with landscaping and participate in summer football and basketball sports camps.
“I faltered during the winter season, athletically and academically. Basketball is more demanding time-wise, and I was struggling a little to get my homework done and keep my grades up.”
A 3.7 GPA and 1720 SAT score would contradict that notion.
Megay’s solid work ethic and unwavering commitment to his schoolwork won out at the end – even though the Wildcats weren’t doing much winning on the basketball court. OJR beat Brandywine Heights in its second game of the season before enduring an 11-game losing streak.
“We struggled in the beginning but we finished strong,” said Megay, who hit 38 treys and finished with a respectable 9.9-point scoring average for the 4-18 Wildcats. “We were very young and we needed to mature, and I think we came along pretty well. We got the bulk of our few wins at the end of the season.”
The progress showed during the last nine games when OJR topped Upper Perkiomen, Exeter and Boyertown and took eventual PAC-10 champion Pope John Paul II to the limit before falling 56-51.
“The biggest thing about Ryan is that he’s a leader under every circumstance,” said OJR boys basketball coach Kevin Kirby. “He always puts the team ahead of himself, and that’s probably the best thing you can say about any high school kid.”
Solid on the field, in the classroom and the community – Megay represents all that’s promising about America’s future. Already accepted at Colorado, St. Joseph’s, Penn State-Altoona and James Madison University, Ryan has a clear vision of the future.
Numbers and statistics are the centerpiece of every sport, and combined with his propensity for mathematics, Megay would like to apply his education in that direction.
Sabermetrics – the analysis of baseball through statistical evidence – is more than a trend. It’s become a way of life among the seamheads. Everything that happens on the field, in the dugout and at the negotiating table is based on the numbers, and baseball has fully embraced the concept.
Maybe that's where Megay is headed.
“I’d like to do something involving sports,” Ryan said, “that’s based on statistics.”
Juggling numbers, it seems like the perfect fit.