Football competition raises money for Hilinski’s Hope 

Mark and Ryan Hilinski make the trip to Pullman to support event



Ryan Hilinski throws the ball around prior to the event’s start, April 23.

BRANDON WILLMAN, Multimedia editor

Coming back to Pullman is a mixed bag of emotions for Mark and Ryan Hilinski, the father and brother of the late Tyler Hilinski, but both wanted to create new happy memories in any way possible.

A team of sports management seniors, including Brenden Potts, who connected the group with the Hilinskis, planned and hosted the 1v1 For Hop3 event.

The event raised over $700 for Hilinski’s Hope, an organization committed to promoting mental health in honor of the former WSU quarterback Tyler Hilinski.

The 1v1 for Hop3 event was the perfect opportunity for Mark and Ryan to create a new happy memory in Pullman in Tyler’s honor.

Ryan Hilinski throwing the ball to students who participated in 1v1 for Hop3 event, April 23.

“Coming back here, especially for an event like this, I mean anything big or small in Washington, will always have our hearts. Pullman is just an amazing place and people remember Tyler to this day. It’s special,” Ryan said.

The event’s main attraction was a one-on-one football bracket with a grand prize of a football signed by members of the WSU football team.

Receiver tracks ball with hands and eyes in attempt to make play, April 23.

Other events included a 40-yard dash and furthest throw competition, as well as a raffle for items, including signed football gloves, a signed shirt and a hat signed by Ryan and Cam Ward, among other things.

“As long as we are around Cougs, it’s awesome and we will keep our heads up. We love everybody here,” Mark said.

Having made the drive from Spokane the day of, Mark said that Ryan talked about the beauty of the drive and how nothing could beat the scenes. Although it can be tough coming back to Pullman, they said these events mean so much for them and the Hiliniski’s Hope Foundation.

For Ryan especially, doing these types of events really helps for keeping Tyler and the cause of Hilinski’s Hope in the minds of students across the nation. Doing things for the Foundation is a pillar of Ryan’s life and is something he takes pride in doing, he said.

“Hiliniski’s Hope has really been everything we do besides football, school and faith. It’s just everything to us because we don’t want Tyler to pass a second time,” he said.

A prominent aspect of the Foundation and seen all throughout campuses across the country are the bracelets that read “Hilinski’s Hope” with the number of Tyler’s jersey, No. 3, with the suicide prevention hotline on the inside.

The wristbands are a part of the goal to put as much good in the world as Tyler was poised to bring, Mark said.

“If you knew Tyler, it would not surprise you that [so many people wear his wristbands]. It was not because he was some world-beater quarterback or super talented QB, which he was, but he was going to live a long, healthy life and was going to put how much good we are getting out of the wristbands into the world,” he said. “We are trying to make up for the good he would have made as best we can.”

Receiver and QB discuss play before down in 1v1 football tournament, April 23.

Seeing all of the wristbands is special to the Hiliniski family, as it serves as a remembrance of Tyler’s life and the things he did.

During his time at Northwestern, several of Ryan’s teammates have told him about how they wore Hilinski’s Hope wristbands throughout their playing careers, including the time before they personally knew Ryan.

“It’s special to see that remembrance. It’s awesome, it’s honestly awesome. I say awesome a lot because Tyler used to always say awesome. It is just really cool and special to see,” Ryan said.