The old saying goes, “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight; it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” Next to that saying should be a picture of junior Ryan Hubley, a five-foot-seven, 165-pound wide receiver who has made his presence felt on the Hopkins football program and on any opposing defense that tries to cover him.
In a position that typically relies heavily on height and jumping ability, Hubley’s combination of speed, intelligence and toughness is a bit of an outlier, but his performance on the field has shown time and time again that you don’t have to be larger than life to play like you are.
Since coming to Homewood in the fall of 2017, Hubley has been a dominant force in the Blue Jays receiving corps. The Pennsylvania native had 29 receptions his freshman year, the most by a freshman since Hopkins great Brad Munday’s 36 in 2013. More impressive, he did this during a season that saw two other receivers, Brett Caggiano and Luke McFadden, earn First Team All-Centennial Conference honors, with the latter earning the Conference’s Player of the Year honor.
Last season, it would be Hubley’s turn to earn First Team honors, leading the Blue Jays in receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns with 58, 1,162 and nine, respectively. This included 27 receptions for 304 yards in the playoffs as Hubley helped Hopkins make a historic run to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) semifinals.
On top of his athletic accomplishments, Hubley has led the way in the classroom, too, with the Computer Science major being awarded First Team CoSIDA/Google Cloud Academic All-District and being named to the Centennial Conference Academic Honor Roll last season.
Hubley is on pace for another dominant season as well, and he is currently leading the conference in receiving yards per game with 102.0. However, it was his performance last game, where he reeled in 10 catches for 112 yards and a touchdown in a 44-0 win against the Moravian College Greyhounds, that earned him the distinction of being named The News-Letter’s Athlete of the Week.
News-Letter: What made you decide to come to Hopkins?
Ryan Hubley: I chose Hopkins because of its great academic and football reputation. I wanted to go to a school where I would get a meaningful education, as well as be able to play football in a competitive environment.
N-L: What is your preparation like for each game?
RH: In terms of game planning, I think the coaches do a great job of preparing me each week through the meetings and practice. We have a very competitive practice, which gives me a lot of confidence going into gameday, knowing I’m going up against some of the best guys in the Conference every day.
N-L: How has the move of David Josephson to offensive coordinator impacted yourself as well as the team?
RH: Coach Josephson has really made me see the game from a different view by teaching us a lot about what the defenses are trying to do to stop us. This has helped me a lot with my route running because I can understand where the holes in the defense are. From a team perspective, I think Coach Joe brings a lot of juice to practice, and I’m happy to have him back at Hopkins.
N-L: The team had an incredible run last season, advancing to the Final Four for the first time in program history. What has been different this year in terms of the expectations you have for yourself and the team?
RH: The expectation for the team, since the spring, has been to go all the way to the National Championship. Now that we’re in season, the mindset for the team has shifted to focusing on the current week, and right now we’re fully focused on Dickinson. For myself, the expectation is always to work as hard as I can and to see where that takes me.
N-L: You have been a major part of the offense since you stepped on campus your freshman year. What is different now than your freshman season?
RH: When I was a freshman, I had no clue what anyone was doing on a play except for myself. I now have a pretty good idea what is happening with all 11 guys on a given play, which helps me make decisions during the game and makes me feel more comfortable when I’m out there.
N-L: For those that may not be familiar with the team, what is one thing you would like for everyone to know about the Hopkins football program?
RH: The Hopkins football team is very good and fun to watch at Homewood