He gained 1,091 yards with 11 touchdowns on 197 carries (5.5-yard avg.) and caught three passes for 49 yards (16.3-yard avg.) in 20 games at Fresno State. Ward was ruled academically ineligible to play at Fresno State in 1998, he earned Freshman All-America honors the following year despite playing with a broken right hand. He was limited to only 7 games for the Bulldogs in 2000 due to a knee injury. His Fresno State career ended when he was again ruled ineligible to play in 2001 and 2002 due to academics.
Ward transferred to Ottawa University in Kansas for his final year in 2003, when he set NAIA single-season records with 2,061 rushing yards, 28 touchdowns and 7.8 yards per carry (263 attempts). Also had 47 yards on 4 receptions (11.8-yard avg.) in 10 games at Ottawa.