This Day In Sports: The star from Spokane settles on Boise

April 5, 2014, 10 years ago today: Brett Rypien of Shadle Park High in Spokane gives his verbal commitment to Boise State, becoming the highest-rated quarterback recruit in Boise State history. Rypien, who had been the 2013 Offensive Player of the Year in the state of Washington, was a consensus four-star prospect. tabbed him as the No. 9 overall QB recruit in the country. He chose the Broncos over Washington State, where his uncle Mark starred before going on to become MVP of Super Bowl XXVI. He also had offers from a handful of Pac-12 schools.

Rypien said his preference was to wear No. 11, his high school numeral, when he arrived on campus as an early enrollee the following January. It was a little too early for that, as it was less than three years after the Kellen Moore era ended (although senior Shane Williams-Rhodes, granted a “waiver” of sorts in 2012, was already wearing it). By the time spring football rolled around, Rypien had donned No. 4.

Rypien would burn his redshirt year in the third game of his true freshman season against Idaho State, and he would start for the rest of his career. Some of the most memorable games of his career came during that first year. In his second game and first start, Rypien threw for 321 yards and three touchdowns in a 56-14 road win at Virginia. In his seventh game, he tossed for 469 yards at UNLV. Two weeks later, Rypien passed for a career-high 506 yards versus New Mexico—in a loss. He capped the season with 377 yards and three TDs in a 55-7 rout of Northern Illinois in the Poinsettia Bowl.

The highlight of Rypien’s sophomore year was a 442-yard night in a 28-27 win over BYU on the Blue. His junior season started rocky, as he split time with Kansas transfer Montell Cozart and was sidelined with a concussion in a triple-overtime loss at Washington State, his personal homecoming game. But Rypien ended the season with one of his signature games, throwing for 362 yards and two scores in the Broncos’ 38-28 win over Oregon in the Las Vegas Bowl.

Rypien’s Boise State career had a weird ending. He was 2018 Mountain West Offensive Player of the Year, but the Broncos lost 19-16 in overtime to Fresno State in the MW championship game. Then, late in the first quarter of the First Responder Bowl in Dallas, thunder and lightning wiped the game out—and just like that, it was over. Rypien was a three-time first-team All-Mountain West pick and threw for 13,581 yards, then an MW record, and 90 touchdowns in his career. He wasn’t selected in the 2019 NFL Draft, and he hasn’t played much in the league, but he’s still there. Rypien signed with the Chicago Bears last month.

(Tom Scott hosts the Scott Slant segment during the football season on KTVB’s Sunday Sports Extra. He also anchors four sports segments each weekday on 95.3 FM KTIK and one on News/Talk KBOI. His Scott Slant column runs every Wednesday.)

(Photo Credit: AP)

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