In the latest episode of Ryback’s podcast ‘Conversation with the Big Guy’, the former WWE Superstar discussed the early stage of his professional wrestling career. Former WCW United States Champion, Bill DeMott played an important role in training the Big Guy. Although he didn’t agree to every lesson of DeMott, Ryback mentioned that they were invaluable nonetheless. He also stated that his trainer was responsible for the mental breakdown of several aspiring wrestlers:
"Bill DeMott breaks human beings down and you have to be a f--king man to survive Bill DeMott and most people couldn't. So I am grateful that he put me through the things that he did because he made me more of a man than I would've been. And taught me a lot of hard lessons. Do I agee with all of them? No. A lot of people's wrestling careers came to an end through Deep South Wrestling. There were some negatives to that, but I was able to eventually turn them into positives, so I'm very thankful for it."
The former Intercontinental Champion revealed that WWE had high expectations about him. According to Ryback, the then President of WWE Talent Relations, John Laurinaitis informed him about this:
"John Laurinaitis comes down, and I won't forget, in Deep South and said, 'we expect you to be on the roster at this point in time going against Brock Lesnar' and I was nowhere near ready at that point in time, but it put a lot of pressure on me."
Ryback’s developmental contract with WWE was terminated in 2007. In this edition, he termed that incident as a necessary evil in his life:
"I was in a very bad place and this was such a pivotal point in my life. And Cody Rhodes always joked about, because we lived together briefly, and he always said, he goes, 'Ryan, you need to hit rock bottom'. And I felt like all my life, I always applied myself and done well at things and I never really struggled. I came from a middle class, nice family and I had a great childhood and things like that. And wrestling was my first punch in the face. It was, 'welcome to the real f--king world and you either need to learn to man up or you're going to drown'.”
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