Hilinski in his final game, the 2017 Holiday Bowl
|High school||Notre Dame|
|Born:||May 26, 1996|
|Died:||January 16, 2018 (aged 21)|
|Height||6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)|
|Weight||215 lb (98 kg)|
Tyler Scott Haun Hilinski (May 26, 1996 – January 16, 2018) was an American football quarterback who played college football at Washington State University. He died by suicide following his junior year; an autopsy revealed that he had stage one chronic traumatic encephalopathy.
Hilinski attended Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks, California, before he transferred to Upland High School in Upland, California, prior to his junior year. He played as a quarterback on the high school football team. In his junior year, Hilinski passed for 3,067 yards and 36 touchdowns.
Hilinski enrolled at Washington State University and took a redshirt year in 2015. He became the backup quarterback for the Washington State Cougars in 2016. As a sophomore, Hilinski came off the bench to relieve starting quarterback Luke Falk against the Boise State Broncos, overcoming a 21-point deficit to win the game in triple overtime. He also relieved Falk against the Arizona Wildcats in a loss. Due to an injury to Falk, Hilinski received his first start for the Cougars in the 2017 Holiday Bowl, completing 39 of 50 passes for 272 yards with two touchdowns. He finished the 2017 season completing 130 of 179 passes attempted for 1,176 yards, with seven touchdowns and seven interceptions. He was expected to succeed Falk as the Cougars' starting quarterback in 2018.
Hilinski was born to Mark and Kym Hilinski as the middle of three children in the family. Tyler's older brother, Kelly, played as a quarterback for Notre Dame High School, Columbia University, Riverside City College and Weber State University. His younger brother, Ryan, also a quarterback, played for Orange Lutheran High School and is currently the starting quarterback for the South Carolina Gamecocks.
On January 16, 2018, after not showing up for practice earlier that day, Hilinski was found dead in his apartment with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. He was 21 years old. According to police, a rifle, which belonged to one of his teammates, was recovered next to him along with a suicide note. The death was officially ruled a suicide. A memorial service was held for Hilinski on January 27, at Damien High School in La Verne, California; approximately 800 people attended. On June 26, 2018, doctors revealed that Hilinski was found to have Stage 1 chronic traumatic encephalopathy, which caused him to have the 'brain of a 65-year-old'.
- "Obituaries: Tyler Hilinski". kimballfh.com. January 2018. Retrieved January 28, 2018.
- Sondheimer, Eric (April 25, 2014). "Football: QB Tyler Hilinski commits to Washington State". LA Times. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- Loh, Stefanie (August 26, 2016). "Tyler Hilinski ready to step into backup quarterback role for WSU Cougars". The Seattle Times. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- Meeham, Jim (September 10, 2017). "Tyler Hilinski comes up big in WSU's comeback win over Boise State". The Spokesman-Review.
- Lawson, Theo (October 28, 2017). "Leach rides with Tyler Hilinski through the thick and thin of Washington State's loss at Arizona". The Spokesman-Review. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- Loh, Stefanie (December 28, 2017). "WSU QB Luke Falk sits out Holiday Bowl; Tyler Hilinski makes first career start against Michigan State". The Seattle Times. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- Bonesteel, Matt (January 16, 2018). "Washington State QB Tyler Hilinski dies of apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound". Washington Post – via Chicago Tribune.
- Lawson, Theo (September 14, 2017). "Oh, brother! Washington State backup QB Tyler Hilinski had family far and wide watching his epic comeback". The Spokesman-Review. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- "Tyler Hilinski's Brother Ryan Commits to Play QB at South Carolina". Bleacher Report. Retrieved April 4, 2018.
- "WSU FOOTBALL PLAYER TYLER HILINSKI FOUND DEAD IN APPARENT SUICIDE". KGW8 News. January 17, 2018.
- Bonagura, Kyle (January 17, 2018). "Washington State QB Tyler Hilinski found dead in apparent suicide, police say". ESPN. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- Bonagura, Kyle (January 24, 2018). "Police: Rifle used in Tyler Hilinski's suicide taken from former teammate". ESPN – via ABC News.
- Bonagura, Kyle (January 27, 2018). "Hundreds pay respects to WSU's Tyler Hilinski at memorial service". ESPN. Retrieved January 28, 2018.
- "Tyler Hilinski had Stage 1 CTE". SI.com. Retrieved June 26, 2018.
- "Washington State QB Tyler Hilinski found to have CTE, 'brain of a 65-year-old' after suicide". CBSSports.com. Retrieved June 26, 2018.