Ryan Donnelly

KIRK PENTON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:49 AM ET

It's kind of funny that Ryan Donnelly is playing professional football in Winnipeg.

The Bomber right guard only started playing the sport after moving away from the city when he was 15 years old.

Donnelly's family, which originated in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont., spent five years in Winnipeg when Donnelly was in elementary school and for the first couple years of high school.

They lived in Wildwood Park, and Donnelly attended Vincent Massey Collegiate, which (until this year) didn't have a football program.

When the family moved back to Niagara-on-the-Lake, Donnelly continued to play volleyball -- the sport he had picked up at Massey because he was so tall.

"All the (football) guys used to come into the gym and make fairy gestures," Donnelly said. "They convinced me to come out, I played, and I walked on at McMaster.

"I was the starting left tackle my second game. It was just one of those things that happened."

Donnelly, whose fiancee lives and works in Winnipeg during the season, has a home in Hamilton, but he isn't afraid of travelling abroad.

The Donnelly family, before moving to Winnipeg, spent four years in India of all places after his dad's job took him there.

"I remember a lot of things," the 30-year-old said. "We used to go to the Taj Mahal and hang out there. There were monkeys everywhere. I could tell you stories for hours about that that would blow your mind. It was a really cool experience."

Donnelly, who has two younger brothers, got to experience more than just India.

"We used to travel a lot in the summer," he said. "We'd go to Egypt, Greece, Thailand, the Netherlands. We went a lot of places."

But for now, he's back home -- sort of.

Upon learning that Massey has started up a football program, he said he might just go back and say hello.

"I should go down there and check it out," he said. "I wouldn't mind that."


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