Despite being 1 a.m., Martin Stadium was lit up like a Christmas tree, Tyson Rising recalled. The WSU logo on the football operations building was visible from the other end of the stadium.
So was the Cougar logo on the 50-yard line.
“That was something that was definitely special,” Rising said. “My dad and I got into town pretty late, but we figured we’d drive over to campus. We parked and the gates to the football stadium were wide open. We walked in and I still remember how great everything was.
“It was definitely a memorable moment for us. Everything was wide open for us to go and check out. I think that kind of showcased the close-knit community over there.” <br>
While out in Pullman, Rising and his father also made a trip out to Lewiston to see the Cougs practice.
“I was able to meet all of the offensive lineman and I watched on as I went through practice,” Rising said. “Coach (Clay) McGuire even had me break the o-line down. It was really cool. I felt like I was a part of the team when I was out there.”
RANKED THREE STARS by Scout.com, Rising, out of Ventura College, said the unofficial visit to WSU was so special, it has the Cougs near the top of his recruitment right now.
Holding scholarships from WSU, Colorado, UNLV, San Diego State, Utah State and others, Rising, who will graduate in January and have three years to play two, didn’t hesitate when asked if the Cougs were among his top schools.
“Definitely,” he said “My top three is Washington State, Colorado and San Diego State. With WSU, I want to see how they do in Pac-12 play. I know they play Cal this weekend and then Oregon next weekend. I’m hoping they can be competitive in those games and show that they’re improving.
“I’m hoping to make my decision in the next couple of weeks. I’ve also taken unofficial visits to Colorado and San Diego State. I’m starting to narrow things down.”
It appears WSU is in a good spot with the 6-5, 290-pounder, and offensive line coach Clay McGuire, also Rising’s area recruiter, is a big reason for that.
“I speak with Coach McGuire just about every day,” Rising said. “I connected with him earlier this week actually. We have a really great relationship going right now for sure.
“With Coach McGuire, whenever we speak, it’s almost like I’m talking with a friend. At the same time, he’s a coach and he keeps things professional. I’ve built a different relationship with him than I have with some of the other coaches recruiting me.”
RISING IS ALSO planning on taking an official visit to Washington State, but he is yet to set up that trip. The visit will most likely take place after he makes a verbal commitment.
“I’m looking for a school where I can go in and compete for a spot,” he said. “I’m looking at depth charts to see how many juniors and seniors a school has. I also want to make sure I fit in with the offense.
“At WSU, it’s great because my strength is at pass blocking and I know they throw the ball a ton. I definitely like the offense they run.”
Be sure to check back with Cougfan.com in the coming weeks for more on Rising’s recruitment as his decision nears.
The Cougs have also offered Rising’s younger brother, Cameron, a 2018 quarterback prospect. WSU was offer No. 1 for the signal caller.
“That was really cool,” Rising said. “My dream is to start a legacy at a school and hopefully my little brother follows that up. It’s all up to him, of course.”