AudiLife by Audi Henderson Winter 15/16 - Page 25

When Audi Henderson approached UNLV Soccer Coach Rich Ryerson about a potential partnership, he was all-in! How long have you been at UNLV? I am a UNLV Rebel Alum and Soccer player from 1983-86, graduating in 1987 with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. After my collegiate playing days ended and graduation, I was fortunate enough to chase the professional soccer dream in Sweden and the USA for an additional 10 years. I was fortunate enough to work in a K-12 private school in Rancho Mirage, CA, for twelve years before returning to Las Vegas. This was the sixth season at the helm of the UNLV Soccer Program, serving our student athletes as the Head Coach. What has been your proudest moment as Head Coach? The best moment was sitting and watching our players celebrate winning the 2014 WAC Championship in Seattle, Washington, knowing the five year journey we took to get in that final game. What has UNLV Soccer meant to the City of Las Vegas? The program has been in existence for over 40 years, educating our local talent and producing extremely successful members of our community. We have bankers, teachers, hotel managers, lawyers, financial planners and many other industrious graduates that now make Las Vegas their permanent residence. Tell us about the Men’s Soccer foundation? The Foundation is being organized to supplement the University’s financial commitment to the Men’s Soccer program, to assist in building the most competitive program possible. The Foundation is made up of local business men and former players of our program. What has the partnership with Audi Henderson meant to the team? Audi Henderson has taken the lead on tailgating for our home matches and creating a home environment that is unparalleled in the WAC Conference. The rush my players get after scoring and running towards the Audi Rings displayed in our “West End,” celebrating with the fans is incredible to witness. We have a great mix of families, and college students mixing in the crowd, which has been electric this season... ground breaking! We enjoyed our largest crowd in the Men’s Soccer history for our match against #11 Seattle and everyone left amazed at where we have come with the efforts of Audi Henderson. We couldn’t have done it without the dedication of Jim Diguilio and Tim McGarry, along with Tripp Jones and the baseball crew! What is your vision for the future of the UNLV Men’s Soccer Program? Our vision is a National Championship, and consistent rankings in the “top 15” for NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer, while using a majority of home grown local players. We would love to grow our fan base and increase our gate each home game, as well as increasing our stadium capacity. We want to continue to produce competent, confident, and socially responsible young men! 25