Long Gets Ahead Of The Curve

By Daneysse Victoria Daniels

Most people have to take multiple trips to multiple campuses' to decide on which university to spend the next chapter in their lives. Junior Travis Long, defensive end for the Washington State football team, however, did not.

The Spokane, Wash., native said he grew up watching the WSU program.

"I was always a Cougar fan growing up," Long said.

He said that because his uncle attended Montana State University, Long himself grew up as a MSU fan.

Long said although he had offers from other schools such as Boise State University and also Oregon State University, he knew when he made the visit to the Pullman, Wash., campus that he wanted to be a Cougar.

Long played a variety of sports growing up, including basketball and baseball alongside football.

While at Gonzaga Prep, Long played four years of varsity basketball and one year of baseball. During his junior and senior year as a Bullpup, Long received multiple awards. During his junior, year Long was an All-GSL pick for the second consecutive year and named Junior All-State by Ron Siegel. In his senior season, Long was named Tacoma News Tribune Northwest Nugget honorable mention and Seattle Times Red Chip prospect, alongside other honors.

During his career at Washington State, head coach Paul Wulff said Long has been a great leader in multiple ways.

"He has been here two full years, starting his third now, and he has been a great leader," Wulff said. "He had a learning curve in his first year, but in year two you saw him really grow. He played the whole season with a shoulder that was slipping out, and he stayed playing for the team which is impressive. Then he had surgery and right now he is playing really good football. He is acting like a true leader and true veteran on and off the field."

At the end of Long's sophomore season, he had surgery to fix his shoulder, forcing him to miss out on the 2011 spring season. He now says he has grown from the injury and is ready to get back out on the field with his team and play during the upcoming 2011 fall season.

"Not playing in the spring really made me miss football a lot," Long said. "So I am ready to get back out there and play this fall."

With less than two weeks left before the first game of his junior year, Long said he hopes to one day play at the next level in the NFL if he has the opportunity.

"If I have the chance I would love to play in the NFL, but as for outside of football I am majoring in management operations so somewhere in that industry afterwards," Long said.

Long said the overall experience of being a Washington State Cougar has helped him grow as both a player and a person. He said WSU is a great school and going through experiences as a student, and the injury as a player has really helped him grow.

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