Ventura College standout Tyson Rising is the No. 7 offensive tackle prospect in the Scout100 and No. 68 junior college player overall at 6-foot-5 and 295 pounds, with a frame that is relatively lean at that size.
Foot quickness in his pass pro is going to be the potentially limiting issue at offensive tackle and what may determine whether his future is outside or inside. At the junior college level there aren't many potent speed rushers to worry about, and even in the Pac-12, probably only a handful of guys at most in 2015 were problematic in this regard, but these players exposed ASU's starting tackles. The quickness and depth of Rising's drops against athleticism are going to have to improve to play at a high level in the Pac-12 in this area, but he has a lot of very positive attributes.
Rising is very economical in the same types of blocking ASU's offense requires, from stretch zone runs to down blocking on the edge in sweeps, and containment on the backside of power and inside zone. He shows the athletic movements and technique to be able to play inside or out in the ASU scheme on run downs, which is the true litmus test for receiving a scholarship given his positional versatility.
On range blocks, Rising smartly uses his position on the field as an ally, understanding when to expand the zone block toward the boundary or out-flank it to create a run lane on the perimeter. He does these things in in a clear way with his footwork and early anticipation in a way that running backs like to see set up in front of them. His three step athletic ground coverage out of a stance isn't great for a tackle but he locates cut blocks well at the second level and when reaching to the perimeter, and sells out for these blocks in a manner that hints at his toughness and competitiveness.
Though Rising doesn't have the classic offensive tackle or foot quickness of an NFL offensive tackle prospect, nor the frame girth and overwhelming power of a clear cut NFL offensive guard prospect, a number of ASU's better players on the line in recent years didn't either. Rising certainly has the potential to be no less than a solid starter in the conference if he assimilates quickly. The spring should help foster that transition, and his positional versatility gives him more of a chance than if he was limited in such a way. Colorado, Washington State and others offered Rising, and Oregon was involved until the end as well.
Rising is versatile and ASU can tinker in the spring more because it has Rising and fellow mid-year junior college offensive line transfer A.J. McCollum in the fold. Initially it was a question that even ASU had as to whether Rising would be tall enough and long enough to play a right tackle position given the rest of its roster composition and his athleticism. But ASU offensive line coach Chris Thomsen now believes that to be the case according to Rising and others. So he'll able to practice and compete at tackle -- probably right tackle, though he played left tackle at Ventura -- or guard, which provides even more options to the group that will be replacing four starters.
ASU coach Todd Graham was able to comment on his mid-year signings and had the following to say about Rising:
“Tyson Rising, 6-foot-5 295-pound guy that’s very, very versatile on the offensive line. ... Obviously graduating four, to have two have two mid-year guys coming in here is big to be able to develop with an already talented young group.”