COUGS GO LOCAL: LAND DO-IT-ALL ATHLETE

WASHINGTON STATE'S ONGOING quest for athletic prospects with big frames -- the types of players who can potentially play DE, TE or perhaps other positions -- turned into a bonanza this week with the verbal commitment of an in-state prep standout. Diamond-in-the-rough and exceptional athlete Kevin Kooyman is going crimson according to his father. "He told Doba and Rosenbach both," said Bart Kooyman. "I talked to Bill and they were both really excited, as were we."

CF.C spoke to Kooyman yesterday evening before he verballed and was able to reach his father earlier tonight. Kooyman, whom The Seattle Times called "one of finest three-sport athletes in state", is a Cougar.

Kooyman thought WSU might be close to offering last month, with the Cougs telling the 6-5.5, 215-pounder out of Covington's Tahoma High they'd likely complete their evaluation during the winter break. Sure enough, a few days ago, Kooyman was thrilled to hear from Cougar head man Bill Doba he had himself a WSU scholarship offer.

It didn't take Kooyman long to decide Washington State was the best fit, choosing Wazzu over offers from Boise State, Idaho and Eastern, and interest from Washington, Oregon, Cal, Utah and others.

"He wanted to play for a Washington school since he was born and raised here," said Bart Kooyman, Kevin's father. "And he wanted to play Division I, and he wanted to play Pac-10."

Kooyman told a very happy Doba and Timm Rosenbach last night he's coming to Pullman and would not be tripping to both WSU and Idaho both next weekend as he'd planned. Instead, he and his parents will be spending the entire weekend in Pullman.

"He told Doba and Rosenbach both," said the elder Kooyman. "I talked to Bill and they were both really excited, as were we. It came as a bit of a shock. He had been wooed by a couple of the Idaho teams. He called both teams this evening and told them he was going with Washington State."

Kooyman, who was voted the top tight end at Oregon's camp this summer, could play defensive end, tight end or elsewhere at Washington State depending on how he fills out his 6-foot-5.5 frame. Kooyman said earlier last night before he verballed he'd be happy playing on either side of the but might have a slight preference for defense. He likes to hit.

FROM HIS DEFENSIVE END spot this season, Kooyman racked up 63 tackles that included a league leading 16 tackles for loss, five sacks, three fumbles recovered, two forced fumbles, three pass break ups, a punt block and one defensive play returned for a touchdown.

He was named all-league for the second year in a row in the rough and tumble SPSL on both offense and defense. The Seattle Times named him Star Times 2005 all-area on defense, and the Seattle PI tabbed him all-area defense as well.

Offensively, Kooyman caught 21 passes on the year for run oriented Tahoma but his value on that side of the ball was also readily apparent, as Kooyman took home All-Area honors from the Tacoma News Tribune

Kooyman bench presses 300 pounds, squats 500, runs 40 yards in 4.6 seconds. Just as impressive in the classroom, he carries a 3.95 GPA and scored 1500 on the SAT.

The defending Class 4A state wrestling champion at 215 pounds, Kooyman also runs high hurdles and anchors Tahoma High School's 400-meter relay in addition to competing in the shot and discus.

Kevin Kooyman profile


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