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Rypien’s performance was mind-boggling

A GRIP ON SPORTS

A day after Brett Rypien's incredible performance at Albi Stadium, when he passed for a state-record 613 yards, I was still intrigued. So I did some research. Read on.


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• When I was the S-R's prep writer and editor, I took all the GSL records Merle Derrick and others had compiled over the years and exported them into Word files. Those files are still on my computer, so it allows me to look back at the old days of Greater Spokane League football – even before there was a GSL. What interested me about Rypien's performance is not how would stack up against other GSL games – we already knew it was a record – but how it stacked up versus seasons. So I began to look back. And what I found was remarkable. Rypien's total from Thursday night would have led the GSL for a season as late as 1975, when Rogers' Robin Moran led the City League with 497 yards passing. Yes, for the season. But that wasn't the only year Rypien's total would have led the league. Nine times between 1946 and 1975 the City League leader threw for less than 613 yards in a season. If anything tells you how much high school football has changed, those numbers illustrate it. Yes, some of those early totals came on a six-game schedule. But others came on eight or nine games. Think about this. Add Rypien's total Thursday with the game last season in which he threw for 577 yards and you have 1,190 yards passing in two games. That total was not passed in a GSL season until 1977, when Jim Dorr threw for 1,898 in the Pirates' eight games. Is it little wonder Rypien is the GSL's career passing leader already, five games into his junior season. Which brings me to the former leader, his uncle Mark. When Mark set the career passing mark for the Highlanders from 1978-80, his 4,965 yards obliterated the old mark by more than 1,400 yards. The former record holder? Some guy named Ryne Sandberg, who threw for 2,514 yards for North Central from 1975-77. Rypien's mark came in 24 league games, the only games in which the S-R keeps records. Everyone played non-league and/or playoff games, but those statistics are not included. Nowadays, GSL teams play nine league games. If Brett stays healthy through his senior season, he could throw for more than 10,000 yards in 27 league games. Yes, he could quite possibly more than double uncle Mark's old record. Now that's amazing. But I will never say Brett's record will ever be broken, even it it gets to those numbers, as I'm sure some folks in this area thought back in 1980. Because, really, who knows how football will change over the next 40-to-50 years?

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• WSU: The Cougars' bowl hopes will either take a big step forward or backward today. It's all about math. A win puts them two games from eligibility; a loss keeps them three. There will be six games remaining either way. Jacob Thorpe has more in his advance from Berkeley. … Jacob also has his keys to a win today over California. … The blog also has quite a few items, with a post on a Cougar freshman charged with assault after allegedly punching a teammate and today's morning links. … The Cougar volleyball team lost a tough one to Utah. … It's Saturday, so we have ESPN.com's Pac-12 mailbag.

• Gonzaga: A class of 2015 guard, who may not be ready for college until 2016 or 2017 due to a LDS mission, committed to the Zags yesterday. Jim Meehan has a couple of blog posts and a story concerning Jesse Wade. … Speaking of GU guards, it seems John Stockton has been working with the Jazz's backcourt.

• EWU: The Eagles will be hosting Weber State this afternoon in Cheney and Jim Allen has a short preview as part of our college football roundup.

• Idaho: Josh Wright has an advance of Idaho's game with Fresno State in the Kibbie Dome today on the blog.

• Preps: So above we followed up on Rypien's perfomance Thursday. Any record-breaking performances on Friday? Nope, but there were a bunch of really good games. … Out at Albi, U-Hi used a couple of onsides kicks (one of which is pictured) to grab momentum in a 44-6 win over Rogers. Peter Sowards has the story and Dan Pelle the pictures. Then, in the late game, Ferris rolled past North Central 50-14. Jim Allen has the coverage. … Over at Gonzaga Prep, Greg Lee covered the Pups' 21-9 win over Mead. Colin Mulvany has photos from the game.  … Cheney had little trouble with Sandpoint, winning 28-10. … Jim Meehan was at Coeur d'Alene's 48-7 win over Lewiston. … J.T. Phelan made the right choice and East Valley defeated Colville 20-0. Chris Derrick has the story. … West Valley posted a 32-14 homecoming win over Clarkston. Mike Vlahovich has the coverage. … Thomas Clouse watched as Lakeside outscored Medical Lake 63-34. … Freeman shutout Riverside 34-0. Steve Christilaw has the story. … We also can pass along a roundup of the rest of the local games along with the scorelist and box scores. … From off the football field, we have this roundup of Friday's action.

• Seahawks: For the second consecutive week, the Hawks will face a team with a great to good pass rush without three or four of their usual starters up front. Again, it doesn't bode well for Russell Wilson and the offense. … Pete Carroll doesn't seem to be bothered by it. He also likes B.J. Daniels.

• Sounders: Seattle will be in Denver tonight without Clint Dempsey. The star is still dimmed by a tight hamstring and won't be available for the matchup with the Colorado Rockies. … There is a lot at stake in the match, with will be televised. … Sigi Schmid deserves consideration as the MLS coach of the year.

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• So what happens in Berkeley today? First off, Jacob will have a long, uphill walk to the stadium. That's just the deal there. Then he'll be amazed by the view of the San Francisco Bay from the press box. Then, no, wait, you want to know about the game? Oh, the Cougars will struggle but will pull out a win. The defense, which works against this type of offense every day, will limit Cal's opportunities, force a few turnovers and the offense will do just enough to win 30-28. Until later …


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Jim Allen Sports reporter Jim Allen's primary coverage areas are Eastern Washington University football and men's basketball, and college and high school soccer. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Jacob Thorpe Sports reporter Jacob Thorpe covers Washington State University athletics. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Jim Meehan Jim Meehan's coverage areas include Gonzaga University men's basketball, Spokane Shock football, golf and volleyball. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Chris Derrick Chris Derrick is a sports reporter. His primary coverage areas are the Spokane Chiefs, Spokane Indians, women's basketball and high school softball and volleyball. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Josh Wright Josh Wright is a freelance correspondent who covers the University of Idaho football team and men's basketball team.

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Vince Grippi is the online producer for SportsLink, a product of The Spokesman-Review.

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