Young Rypien 'honored' by Leach scholie offer

BRETT RYPIEN, the record-setting sophomore quarterback from Spokane with deep Cougar bloodlines on both sides of the family, said he was shocked Tuesday when Washington State head coach Mike Leach called with a scholarship offer.

Rypien just completed a sophomore season at Shadle Park High that would rival many players' career numbers. The 6-2, 175-pounder threw for more than 3,500 yards, including a state record 577 in a single game,while completing 62 percent of his passes.

"I had goals, but not to that extent," Rypien said his big year. "We have our whole wide receiver corps coming back next year as well."

His play on the field garnered attention from multiple colleges. He took an unoffical visit to Washington earlier this month and connected with UW assistant coach Peter Sirmon.

But Washington State is the first program to offer the talented passer, whose uncle Mark Rypien was a WSU star in the 1980s and later a Super Bowl MVP with the Washington Redskins.

"I just got off the phone with Mike Leach and he offered me," said Rypien. "I had heard they might offer, but I was shocked it was so early. It is a great honor."

While most know about his famous uncle's connection to Pullman, the family ties tol WSU are actually more wide spread. His mother is also a Washington State graduate and the sister of former Cougar assistant coach Chris Tormey.

"I have always liked Washington State," said Rypien. "My whole family has gone there. I like Washington State a lot but I also want to see how things play out in recruiting."

This wasn't the first time Rypien had spoken with the Washington State head coach, and he was in attendance for the Cougars' dramatic 31-28 victory over rival Washington this past weekend, where he tweeted pictures of the field being stormed.

"I called a couple weeks ago to talk to Coach Leach and set up an unofficial visit for the Apple Cup," said Rypien. "We talked about routes; we run a similar offense to the Air Raid at my school."

"The Apple Cup was the best game that I have ever been to," said Rypien. "So I picked a good one."

Many Cougar faithful will be hoping for an early commitment from Rypien, but he sees his focus staying off recruiting for the time being.

"It feels great, it is reassuring," said Rypien. "But it is also more motivation. Offers are great and I am sure recruiting will be busy, but I am staying focused on Shadle Park and winning games."

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