WSU’s Kyle Sweet searching for next level

PULLMAN – Inside receiver Kyle Sweet will enter his second fall camp at Washington State with a simple goal: run the perfect route every time and catch anything that comes his way.

Sweet had 21 receptions for 222 yards as a true freshman last season. Sweet, who prides himself on consistent route running and having sticky hands, says he’s spent the offseason getting ready to be a bigger contributor in '16. He said he wants to solidify himself as one of the team’s go-to wideouts under first year inside receivers coach JaMarcus Shephard.

“I just want to be a reliable receiver, run good routes, always be where I’m supposed to be, and mainly just catch the ball. The way I look at it -- if you drop the ball, as coach Shepard says, you’re dropping money on the ground,” said Sweet.

Sweet, listed at 6-0, 190 on the official roster, says he’s been working extremely hard over the summer to get stronger and put on more weight.

“I think the team’s chemistry has really grown -- everybody is friends with everybody,” Sweet said. “At the same time, everything is more competitive.

In last season’s comeback victory against UCLA, Sweet and his older brother, Logan, faced off against each other in the Rose Bowl. It was Senior Night for the older Sweet, also a receiver, and both parents as well as their older sister in attendance. Regardless, Kyle wasn’t upset that he and the Cougs had to spoil the special night for his big brother.

“I think he was bummed that UCLA lost, but he was really happy for me. It’s definitely ‘sweeter’ to be on the winning side of that, but my brother has definitely inspired me as an athlete. I saw what he went through as a walk-on, and how he earned a scholarship, and just how he dealt with a lot of adversity throughout his career at UCLA. It makes me not want to take anything for granted being on scholarship here at Washington State,” said Sweet.

Sweet said his favorite moment of last season was when he broke free against Arizona State on a third-down conversion. The catch and run covered 36 yards down to the ASU 8-yard line.  He said it was a bittersweet moment for him because he didn’t take it in for a score, but it still stands as his favorite.

I’ve known Kyle since he was in Pop Warner, and had the chance to watch him throughout his high school career. At those lower levels, he was so athletic he could play every position on the field extremely well (except maybe o-line). He made huge plays when the team needed it, and was always making something happen out of nothing.

My guess is we’ll see more of his playmaking ability in his second year at WSU.  Sweet figures to battle at the H with incumbent Robert Lewis in fall camp and on into the season.

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