Jahan Dotson’s big day the spark Penn State needed
History was made at College Park on Saturday as Jahan Dotson broke Penn State’s single-game receiving record in the Nittany Lions 31-14 win over Maryland.
Much like many other games this season, the senior receiver put the Nittany Lions on his back in the win as he went off for 242 receiving yards and three touchdowns on 11 receptions.
This was the fourth game this season where Dotson had over 100 yards receiving with his previous high this season coming last week against Ohio State where he had 127 yards through the air.
All three touchdowns on the day for Dotson were longer than 20-yards out as he showcased his speed and ability to shred the Maryland secondary all night long.
That included an 86-yard catch and run in the fourth quarter which would not only give Dotson his third touchdown but also a 21-14 lead which the Nittany Lions wouldn’t let slip away.
Penn State coach James Franklin wasn’t shocked that Dotson was able to show his ability to be a playmaker during the game.
“I'm not surprised at all by what he did tonight,” Franklin said. “They were playing very aggressive man coverage either cover one or cover zero and we know if we got the ball in his hands, he could make those types of plays.”
Even when the Penn State offense has struggled this season, Dotson has been the shining light that has kept the unit afloat.
Dotson currently has 690 receiving yards and seven total touchdowns this season after posting 884 yards and eight touchdowns during the shortened 2020 season the year before.
The Nazareth, Pennsylvania, native had a kid in the candy store mentality when looking back on the game as he also had many family members in attendance to watch him play.
“I'm literally a kid out here having fun playing the game that I love so games like this are special,” Dotson said. “Had a lot of my family members here today. A lot of them saw me play for the first time so special all night all around you got the W, that's what we came here for, it’s good to get back on the win streak.”
Dotson has improved on his game in a big way since he first saw playing time for the Nittany Lions back in 2018 and now finds himself as one of the top receivers in the country and a potential top draft pick this April.
Franklin mentioned just how proud he was of Dotson’s growth throughout his time at Penn State not just as a player but as a person.
“I'm super proud. Of not only John Dotson on the football field, but the type of young man he is, how his parents raised him, the type of student he is,” Franklin said. “He's the perfect representation of what we want to be at Penn State so I'm not surprised at all. He's got a very bright future and you know, I'm a big fan, as you can imagine.”
Logan Bourandas is a third-year majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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