Pencer's heart still in Pullman?

TYSON PENCER LOOKED SET to start his Washington State career last fall. The recruit from Canada was pre-cleared by the NCAA's academic clearinghouse and good to go in the eyes of WSU itself. He was actually in Pullman for Augist workouts when the NCAA switched gears and said he wasn't eligible. He spent the fall lifting weights, playing in a community league and weighing his options.

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Pencer was busy working out when the call from CF.C came to his Delta, B.C., home Wednesday, but mom and dad, Tammy and Glenn, provided a rundown on his plans.

Pencer, sidetracked last fall because the NCAA was uncertain about certain Canadian class credits, is still waiting to learn if he's qualified after working the past fall to meet NCAA requirements.

If that confirmation from NCAA were to come in the next few days, Pencer would immediately fly to Pullman and enroll in spring semester classes, Tammy said.

But if there is too much more of a delay, or if Pencer does not obtain clearance from the NCAA, he plans on taking an on-line class and getting cleared in time to join Washington State in August for the Cougs' fall camp. With classes having already commenced at WSU, that may be the more likely scenario.

Mike Levenseller has continued to run the point for WSU with the Pencers. He also spoke to Glenn Pencer today.

"He's a wonderful man," said Tammy.

IF PENCER fails to qualify in the eyes of NCAA by August, another option would be to enroll at Western Washington University. But Tammy says his goal is to play Pac-10 ball at Washington State.

"When then-coach (Bill) Doba offered Tyson a scholarship, he had told us once you commit to being a Coug, you'll always be a Coug. And he went on to explain how tight the bond is there, that they're family. As a family, that means a lot to us. And that still means a lot to us," said Glenn.

"His heart is still on Washington State, that's his goal and his dream," said Tammy. "... he's spent some time there and met the guys. And we have a house full of Cougar stuff."

MEANWHILE, PENCER DOESN'T physically resemble the same player Washington State recruited out of high school as a tight end/defensive end. Back then, he was 6-5 1/2, 230 pounds.

Fans might want to add d-tackle or offensive lineman to the list of possible positions for Pencer. These days he stands a little over 6-6 and weighs 270 rock-solid pounds.

"He's been training so hard since he's been back, I think he was 230 or so when (he was being recruited) by WSU," said Tammy.

He's also been keeping his football skills honed.

This past season, playing in a community league, Pencer's team won the Provincial finals and the VMFL title game. Pencer starred on defense for the North Delta Longhorns.

Since he never enrolled at WSU last fall, he would have five years to play four.

Tyson Pencer profile

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