2004: Started nine games and appeared in all 11, collecting 34 tackles, seven TFL's, two QBH and two PBU's...Made a career-high six tackles vs. Michigan...Had two TFL's and five tackles at Wisconsin...Totaled two tackles, a TFL, two quarterback hurries and one PBU vs. Northwestern...Recorded four tackles and a TFL vs. Western Michigan.
2003: Returned from a devastating knee injury in 2002 to play 11 games, including starting the final eight ... Totaled 25 tackles, one sack and one quarterback hurry ... Tied his career-highs in tackles (4) and sacks (1) vs. Wisconsin, and had one quarterback hurry ... Made four solo tackles at Purdue.
2002: Played in the first seven games, earning a start vs. Purdue, before missing the rest of the season with a knee injury ... Had two tackles and a sack vs. Michigan ... Had a career-high four tackles at Minnesota, while adding three tackles at Southern Miss. ... Named Academic All-Big Ten.
2001: Redshirted the 2001 season.
High School: Tallied 68 solo tackles, eight sacks and six blocked kicks as a senior ... Also had one interception, nine fumble recoveries and five forced fumbles ... Earned three letters for Coach Bill Lech at Dixon High School ... Three-year All-Conference selection, earning unanimous first-team honors as a senior ... Dixon's Defensive Player of the Year ... Named to the All-Area team as a sophomore, junior and senior ... Team co-captain ... Illinois Football Coaches Association All-State team ... Area Player of the Year ... Also lettered in track and wrestling ... Placed fifth in the shot put at the indoor state championships and third at the outdoor state meet ... Personal best in shot put is 55 feet, 9-inches.
Personal: Full name is Ryan Thomas Ignatius Matha ... Born May 23, 1983 in Hinsdale, Ill. ... The son of Warren and Janis Matha ... Sister, Kristen is a two-year starter in basketball at St. Mary's College in Indiana ... Favorite Illini athlete is Dick Butkus ... Four-year honor roll member with a 3.5 GPA ... Biggest thrill in sports was winning first playoff game in school history as Dixon defeated Rochelle in 2000 ... Lists Warren Sapp as his favorite athlete ... Majoring in speech communication ... Would like to coach football following graduation ... Member of the Key Club.
Career Highs Tackles: 6 vs. Michigan, 10/16/04 Solos: 4, twice (last time at Purdue, 10/4/03 TFL: 2 at Wisconsin, 10/2/04 Sacks: 1, three times (last time at Purdue, 11/12/05) QBH:2 at Northwestern 11/20/04 PBU: 1 at Michigan State, 10/9/04 Blocked FG: 1 vs. Rutgers, 9/3/05