Ryan Fitzgerald

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For the ice hockey player, see Ryan Fitzgerald (ice hockey).
Ryan Fitzgerald
Fitzy (cropped).jpg
Personal information
Full name Ryan James Fitzgerald
Nickname(s) Fitzy
Date of birth (1976-10-16) 16 October 1976 (age 39)
Original team(s) South Adelaide (SANFL)
Draft #4, 1998 National Draft, Sydney
Height/Weight 199cm / 96kg
Position(s) Forward
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
10 (15)
08 0(8)
18 (23)
1 Playing statistics correct to end of 2002 season.

Ryan James "Fitzy" Fitzgerald (born 16 October 1976) is a former Australian rules footballer, Big Brother participant, and radio and television personality. After being drafted from the South Adelaide Football Club, he made his Australian Football League debut for Sydney in 2000, before being traded to Adelaide, where he played eight games in 2002. Fitzgerald later appeared in Big Brother Australia 2004, beginning a wider media career in television on Channel 10's Saturday night AFL show Before The Game.

Early life[edit]

Fitzgerald attended Wirreanda High School and played junior football for Port Noarlunga.[1]

AFL career: 2000–2002[edit]

A tall forward drafted by the Sydney Swans with the 4th overall selection in the 1998 AFL Draft from South Australian National Football League club, South Adelaide, Fitzgerald was unable to make his AFL debut until 2000, due to a shoulder injury. On debut, Fitzgerald kicked five goals and "looked set for a big career". He played nine more games for the rest of the season. At the start of 2001, Fitzgerald injured his knee, requiring a reconstruction that resulted in him missing the entire season. In 2002, he was traded to the Adelaide Crows, but only played eight games for the Crows before retiring from AFL football due to another ACL injury that required a reconstruction.[2]

Media personality and personal life[edit]

Fitzgerald was a contestant in Big Brother Australia 2004, and finished in fourth place at the conclusion of the show. After that he became co-host of the Adelaide Nova 91.9 Breakfast show and made occasional appearances on Before The Game (AFL). In 2005 he had a new role as a co-host on the new Friday night Big Brother Australia show Friday Night Live with fellow Big Brother 2004 contestant Bree Amer, which became a stand-alone show in its own right in 2006 as Friday Night Games.

This show then returned as Friday Night Download, featuring internet videos. It was cancelled early in its second season.

Alongside Premier Mike Rann, he spoke at the opening of the Rundle Lantern in Adelaide.

Ryan married Belinda "BJ" Irons on 15 March 2008 at Adelaide Oval and together they have two sons.

In October 2010, Fitzgerald announced that he would be leaving Nova 91.9 Breakfast to be a part of Nova's drive show Fitzy and Wippa, which then became the Nova 96.9 Sydney breakfast show. Fitzy and Wippa were nominated for the 2011 Australian Commercial Radio Awards in the best on-air team, Metro FM category.[3]

Fitzy is also a regular player in the E. J. Whitten Legends Game. He is credited with nearly winning the game in 2011 but his goal that would have won the game for the All Stars was controversially ruled after the siren.

Fitzgerald makes regular appearances on The Project and Before The Game. On 14 October 2012 (episode seven), he made his acting debut on the Nine Network show House Husbands. Ryan portrayed a bouncer at the strip club in the show.


  1. ^ "SFL to AFL". Southern Football League. Retrieved 22 May 2013. 
  2. ^ Holmesby, Russell; Main, Jim (2011). The Encyclopedia of AFL Footballers: every AFL/VFL player since 1897 (9th ed.). Melbourne, Victoria: Bas Publishing. p. 269. ISBN 978-1-921496-12-7.
  3. ^ 2011 ACRAs, finalists

External links[edit]