Ron Stone Jr. takes the football and journalism world by storm

Stone talks daily schedule, future plans as broadcaster 



WSU edge rusher Ron Stone Jr. celebrates after defeating Colorado State 38-7, Sep. 17, 2022.

ALENA RINEHARDT, Evergreen reporter

Ron Stone Jr., or R.J. Stone, as many know him, boasts a long list of accomplishments and accolades he has accumulated throughout his college career playing football at WSU. While he has shown he excels in football, he also dreams of pursuing a career in broadcasting post-graduation to continue with his love of sports and being on camera.

The weather in San Jose, California where R.J. grew up is predicted to be in the mid-50s with no snow in sight. With the inches of snow and below-freezing temperatures that Pullman has brought recently, one could imagine that it may be hard to adapt between the two. R.J. defies this, saying he has embraced Pullman weather and has been known to wear shorts and no sleeves when most others are bundled up.

R.J.’s attitude toward Pullman’s harsh weather conditions and making the best of situations shines through in many other aspects of his life. He acknowledges his father, Ron Stone Sr., who played 13 years in the NFL, as one of his biggest inspirations and mentors and who has helped him become who he is today.

He says that it was his father who not only kick-started him into playing football but also coached him at just about every level up until his college career.

“He’s the reason I started playing the game in the first place,” R.J. said. “He’s been there with me every step of the way.”

Washington State University defensive edge Ron Stone Jr. (10) celebrates a win after a college football game at Martin Stadium, Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021, in Pullman, Wash.

Starting with flag football in just first grade, R.J. has been involved in playing football for many years. He says the team atmosphere and the community that football entails are some of the biggest things that have kept and continue to keep, him coming back to the game.

R.J. wakes up around 5:40 a.m. so he can start his warm-ups by 6:15 a.m. He then has practice until around 8:40 a.m. when he heads to either the weight room or the training room for treatment. From there he goes to class, has a short break and then finally gets ready for meetings that usually last from 4-6 p.m.

While this is a jam-packed schedule, he said that it is all worth it, especially when such hard work and leadership do not go unnoticed, such as when his teammates voted him team captain.

It has not always been easy for R.J. He said freshman year was one of his most difficult years, especially because it was his first time being red-shirted for the season.

He says it was “humbling in a sense” as it was his first time in his career not starting, let alone playing, but it taught him a lot.

 “You gotta deal with the hardships of being a freshman in college,” RJ said. “And not taking everything for granted, appreciating all of the opportunities that I have gotten.”

WSU defenders Armani Marsh (8) and RJ Stone (10) pursue California quarterback Jack Plummer during an NCAA football match, Oct. 1.

R.J. is majoring in communications and is looking to continue to pursue his love of sports post-graduation with broadcast journalism. He has been able to actively start making this dream come true as the Pac-12 invited him to be a player analyst for the Football Championship Pregame Show.

“You set your dreams from a young age and you chase and you attack them and this is me attacking my dream right now,” R.J. said in a recap posted on YouTube by WSU Athletics.

This is the first time the Pac-12 has had a player analyst on their set. R.J. was able to provide important insight because he has played against many of the players that were in the Utah vs. USC game.

While R.J. definitely has his hands and schedule full of pursuing both football and broadcasting, he says that in his free time he loves to play pickleball and is an active pickleball player. He also loves to binge-watch movies and tv *TV -TD shows and said “Game of Thrones”  as his favorite TV show. Regarding movies, “Pulp Fiction”, “Inception” and “The Dark Knight” are just a few of his favorites.

What makes his busy schedule worth it and what he feels sets WSU apart is the Coug community.

WSU defensive edge Ron Stone Jr. (10) celebrates with fans after a win at a college football game on Oct. 9, 2021, at Martin Stadium in Pullman.

“[Coug fans are] people that genuinely care about us regardless of how we perform,” R.J. said.