John grew up hunting and fishing on his family ranch in Nebraska. He has always had a passion for the outdoors and sports, especially football. While attending Colorado State University on a football scholarship John continued his involvement with the family ranch as his love for the outdoors grew stronger.
In 2001 he was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the fourth round and won a Super Bowl Championship with them in 2002. During this time John became heavily involved in the hunting industry through organizations such as SCI, Dallas Safari Club, and the NRA. His hunting adventures worldwide inspired his idea of developing Dismal River Outfitters.