Three Warren gridders bound for OAC
VINCENT – When Marietta College plays at John Carroll University and at Muskingum University in Ohio Athletic Conference football games Oct. 18 and Nov. 8, respectively, it’ll be a reunion of sorts for three Warren players.
Austin Klintworth will be a Marietta freshman and is expected to be suited up in navy blue and white, while frosh David Ryan will be attired in the blue and gold of JCU and Connor Cisler in the black and magenta of the Fighting Muskies.
On Friday, this Warren trio each announced their college choice in a commitment ceremony in the Warriors gymnasium.
All will be planning to continue their education and competing on the gridiron at an NCAA Division III school.
Klintworth is planning on majoring in geology at Marietta.
“I really liked coach (Andy) Waddle and the opportunities he told I could have,” Klintworth said. “Academic-wise, I feel more comfortable going to Marietta. I like being closer to home and the fact that I can still work with my cattle and stuff like that. I fee more comfortable going to Marietta and being in that program.”
Klintworth said he also considered Muskingum.
Last season, the Pioneers were 1-9 overall and 1-8 in the OAC.
“I will have an easier time being in the Marietta offense and getting comfortable with it since Warren’s offense and Marietta’s offense weren’t too different from what I’ve seen,” Klintworth said. “I feel comfortable working with their coaches.”
Last fall, also, Warren was 3-7 overall and 1-3 in the Southeastern Ohio Athletic League (SEOAL).
“Playing under coach (Andy) Schob, we had a couple different types of offense,” Klintworth said. “Last year, we ran the pistol and I saw Marietta runs some of that.
“I feel like he has helped me through the years being able to adapt to different offenses. I feel like it won’t be too big a transition between offenses.”
Quarterbacking the Andy Schob-coached 2013 Warriors was Klintworth. The 6-foot-3, 165-pound captain completed 104 of 194 passes for 1,358 yards and 14 touchdowns. He also rushed for 656 yards on 132 carries and seven TDs.
At the conclusion of the 2013 campaign, Klintworth was a first-team All-SEOAL and All-District honoree and special mention All-Ohio selection.
“Austin is such a competitor and exceeded everyone’s expectations after taking over for Dylan Leffingwell his senior year,” Schob said. “He worked so hard and became a great leader with how he played. His personal qualities make him a great addition to the Marietta College program.”
Klintworth was also a standout 152-pound wrestler at Warren.
Last season Al Logan-coached Muskingum posted a 2-8, 2-7 mark on the gridiron.
“The coach is a great guy,” Cisler said. “Their campus is absolutely beautiful. I like the team.
“I didn’t have much consideration for others. Once I saw Muskingum’s campus, I knew that was it.”
Cisler played mostly on the defensive side of the football at Warren at tackle. The 6-3, 250-pound lineman finished with 33 tackles and four sacks.
“Connor just started playing football his junior year,” Schob said. “He began understanding the game and excelling his senior year. He is strong and very quick for his size just tapped his potential, and as he continues to grow could have a successful college career.”
Said Cisler, “I want to be known as someone who worked hard and represented the school well.”
Ryan is planning on majoring in business management at JCU.
“Man, it felt so great being up there,” Ryan said. “It felt like a perfect fit. I got recruited by (Marietta and Muskingum), too, and John Carroll just felt like a better fit. It’s a dream come true (on playing college football). It’s everything you expect and everything you want as a little kid playing NCAA (football) on Xbox.”
Last fall, the Tom Arth-led Blue Streaks were 9-2, 8-1.
“I really like their offense,” Ryan said. “That’s the reason they were on the top of my list. A lot of stand up, spread (offense) but also down in the three-point stance for sure.”
At Warren, Ryan was one of Klintworth’s primary receivers at the tight end spot. The 6-4, 215-pound TE finished with 34 catches for 576 yards and one six-pointer.
“We started out the first two years in the spread, so I would stand up a lot,” Ryan said. “That got me a little more used to standing up on the outside. Then we went to the wing-T (offense) and I had to work on my three-point stance. I got a good mix of both, so I think I’m ready for (college).”
Ryan was both a first-team all-league and district honoree, and also a special mention all-stater.
“David has worked every day to develop into the player and person he is today,” Schob said. “He has evolved from a QB to a big, physical TE able to have success at the college level.
“David was able to stretch the field with his size and athletic ability, but make tough catches in traffic while demanding double coverage.”
Ryan is also a baseball player at Warren.
On playing each other on the college level….
“We’re definitely excited we’ll get to see each other every year,” Klintworth said. “It’s definitely something we talk about.”
Said Cisler, laughing, “I’m hoping next year I’m going to sack (Klintworth).”