Tryon Turnaround

Perhaps the last memory many of us have of Andrew Tyron was in the closing moments of the GoDaddy Bowl when his late hit call gave Ball State an extra 15 yards and a close shot at a game-tying field goal on the game’s final play. We all saw Tryon on the sideline, staring coldly into space.

With a career at AState that had seen both huge plays and frustrating mistakes, the then junior seemed fated to be remembered for a mistake that had erased the improbable rally led by Fredi Knighten's off-the-bench performance.

Ryan Carruthers’ big block followed by the mad scramble of happy Red Wolves’ players and fans on the field gave the Russellville product another chance to write his legacy at AState.

But the Tryon that Coach Blake Anderson has seen this past summer has been one of the first-year coach’s biggest surprises.

“I would say Andrew Tyron is probably made the biggest turnaround of any player on our team,” said Anderson. “To be honest, and I would say this if he were sitting there, I am not trying to embarrass him but Andrew was a guy when we got here who was kinda searching for an identity a little bit. He had gotten himself in trouble, either in the classroom or off the field in different ways, making poor decisions. I think just being careless."

“And we challenged him when we got here and told him that his days were going to be limited if that way continued. And he took it to heart. Has changed his personality a good bit, his work ethic has improved greatly. He came out of the summer top-rated defensive player in terms of work and just day to day work ethic by our strength staff and he has done better in the classroom.”

A fifth-year senior from Russellville, Tryon is one of the 10 players who have played a part in Arkansas State’s three-conference titles and five coaches in five seasons.

“He has become a leader,’’ said Anderson. “He is a starter for us. He wants to play. Right now he is starting on all four special teams. We will probably eliminate one of those but he does that by choice. He wants to be on those."

“This is a guy who honestly was on his way out. But he found out there is a better way and coach Trooper Taylor has done a great job with him. They bonded. He has spent a lot of time with me as well. He is married and has a kid so he is learning how to be a good father and a dad. He has really turned around and of all the guys he is one of the ones I am most proud of.”