The Friday Night Lights came on last night and Dorian Thompson-Robinson’s star shone bright. His skill set was on full display on ESPN’s nationally televised game against 6th-ranked DeMatha of Maryland as Bishop Gorman pulled away late and cruised to a 35-23 win. The win extended Bishop Gorman’s win streak to 55 games in a row and provided DTR with a great showcase game in his first start as Bishop Gorman’s starting quarterback.
Showcase was exactly what DTR did in this game. DTR completed 19 of 23 passes for 288 yards and three scores and also scored on two short first-half TD runs. These numbers equate to a 78.3% completion percentage, 12.5 yards per attempt and a QB rating of 158.3. Pretty solid numbers for his first start at quarterback.
In my last Bruins Nation article on DTR, I talked about highlighting his skill set in future pieces. One area of DTR’s skill set that jumps off the screen when you watch him is his arm strength. At 6’2 and about 200 lbs, DTR can get the ball to where it needs to be with velocity and accuracy. DTR showed off his arm strength many times last night, but there were a couple of plays that really caught my eye.
The first one happened at the 2:54 mark of the first quarter on a 2nd and 7 play. DTR took the snap in the shotgun having two receivers flanked left. The outside receiver ran a clear-out route, while the slot receiver ran a 10 yard out with the defender slightly playing underneath the route. DTR took the snap from the shotgun, looked left, released a throw that traveled about 20 yards in the air, slightly above the outstretched hands of the defender and into the hands of Jalen Nailor. The throw was one of those throws that had the potential to be intercepted if not thrown with the velocity and accuracy that DTR displayed on the play.
The other throw occurred in the 4th quarter at the 4:34 mark. This throw and catch set Twitter on fire. With Bishop Gorman up 27-17, they were facing a 3rd and 13 at about their 23 yard line. DTR took the snap from the shotgun and, once again, he had two receivers lined up left. DeMatha rotated coverage on that side of the field and, basically, had three defenders on that side. At the snap, Jimmy Telles, the slot receiver, was bumped and ran through the zone of the first defender. He was then picked up by the safety. The potential problem for DTR was that the corner on the outside receiver was looking in the backfield and released off the outside receiver and veered towards Telles. Telles, then, had the attention of both the safety and corner. DTR threw a 30-yard laser, perfectly placed between the safety and the slightly late arriving corner. Again, the throw was placed in a spot that allowed the receiver to be the only one that could make a play on the ball, and the catch by Telles was amazing.
That touchdown can be seen at the 40-second mark in this highlight video from Elaine Wilson of the Las Vegas Review Journal.
Up next for Thompson-Robinson, the Mater Dei Monarchs, ranked as the No. 1 team in the USA TODAY High School Super 25 entering the season. The Monarchs had no trouble Friday night with Southern California power Bishop Amat (La Puente), rolling to a 31-7 victory. The significance of this game for both teams’ hopes for the national championship cannot be understated and will provide DTR with another chance to showcase his skills in front of a TV audience on Fox Sports West.
Good luck, Dorian, and great first game!