Cook offered by dream school

On Monday BYU extended a scholarship offer to an Inland Empire two-way athlete who attends Murrieta High School. Tyler Cook is being looked at by many Division I colleges, and while the BYU offer is his second overall, expect more to come for the Southern California athlete.

Coming in at 6 feet 3 inches and 212 pounds, Tyler Cook – a member of the 2014 recruiting class – is already physically developed.

"I run a 4.5 forty and I'm playing d-end/outside linebacker, which is kind of a hybrid position. It's a position that allows you to do different things on the field based on what the defensive call is."

Murrieta High School runs various defenses, and Cook was used as an outside linebacker and defensive end much like Kyle Van Noy on BYU's defense.

"Our defense is sort of a complicated system," he said. "We can go from a 3-4 to a 4-3 and even some more difficult defenses than that. We did pretty good this season and didn't get quite where we wanted to be. We had all the talent in the world but we just couldn't get it together in the end. We finished the season 11-1 and lost in the CIF finals to Centennial High School.

"As far as stats goes, I had around 80 tackles and 11-and-a-half sacks. I had more tackles that weren't counted in my actual tackles stats, and so I showed them to our coach and he's reviewing it over. I also had three touchdowns as a tight end/halfback. I was thrown the ball twice all year but scored two touchdowns."

On Monday, Cook was offered a full-ride scholarship by Coach Mendenhall.

"I just got offered by BYU and I'm floating on air with that offer," Cook said. "That's incredible and one of my dream schools. I'm a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, so BYU is my dream school and I'm just so excited about the offer. The environment and the honor code is something that I live by. It's a beautiful campus and they have the type of major that I want to study. They also have one of the top defenses in the nation, and who wouldn't want to be a part of that? I'm just so excited that I was offered by BYU."

Cook has been recruited by outside linebacker coach Kelly Poppinga.

"I emailed Coach Poppinga and we've been talking for a while," Cook said. "He watched my highlight film and was very excited about it. I called him up and talked to him [on Monday] and he told me to give Coach Mendenhall a call around 3:30. [Mendenhall] was really excited about me and said he loved my film and loved what I could do as a football player. He said how I could represent BYU and made me an offer.

"That whole defensive coaching staff is just incredible, and Coach Mendenhall is not only a great man but an incredible coach. He's the defensive coordinator and BYU has one of the top defenses in the nation. Being able to talk with him on the phone was incredible. He is a really awesome guy."

When Coach Poppinga told Cook to call up Coach Mendenhall, he had no idea what was about to happen.

"It was kind of a surprise when it happened," Cook said with a laugh. "I wasn't really expecting it to happen. With BYU being my dream school, I was just ecstatic when it happened. I was actually at the gym when it happened, and so after I was offered by Coach Mendenhall I told my coach about it. It came as a surprise and I was just so excited!"

The offer from BYU was Cook's second scholarship offer.

"I had San Jose State offer me last Friday," Cook said. "They saw my film and made me an offer right there. I've been getting a lot of interest from different schools. Boise State is looking at me and they've been talking to me pretty seriously. I've been getting a lot of stuff from Oregon. As of right now those are the schools that have been recruiting me the hardest."

Cook plans on visiting BYU soon.

"I'm going to take a visit up to BYU and meet the players, meet the staff and check things out," said Cook. "As the way it looks right now, I honestly think BYU will be my school. That really depends on if it feels right, the players and the type of defense that I fit into. I really think in the end that's where I'll be though. We'll see, and I'm heading up there for a Junior Day here pretty soon."

As of right now, Cook isn't quite sure if he'll serve a church mission.

"It depends on what BYU, or any other college that I decide to go to, wants me to do," said Cook. "If they want me to go on my mission first or if they want me to play first, then I'll decide after that. If they want me to stay and play for four years, then I'll probably go on my mission after that, so I haven't really decided on that as of right now."

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