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Dorian Thompson-Robinson named to Maxwell Award preseason watch list

Rising junior quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson landed a spot on the Maxwell Award preseason watch list Friday. He would be the first Bruin to win the award since quarterback Gary Beban in 1967. (Liz Ketcham/Daily Bruin senior staff)

By Sam Connon

Jul. 24, 2020 3:12 pm

Dorian Thompson-Robinson is officially in the running for college football’s most outstanding player award, should there be a season in 2020.

The rising junior UCLA football quarterback was named to the Maxwell Award preseason watch list Friday morning. The award, which has been handed out every year since 1937, is given to the top college football player of the year – regardless of position.

Thompson-Robinson started 11 of UCLA’s 12 games in 2019, passing for 2,701 yards and 21 touchdowns while rushing for another 198 yards and four scores. His 245.5 passing yards per game ranked 31st in the country, but his 12 interceptions and 11 fumbles helped contribute to the Bruins giving away the 25th-most turnovers in the nation last year.

Despite missing time due to injury in both 2018 and 2019, Thompson-Robinson is just 2,718 yards away from becoming a top-five passer in program history. He is just one passing touchdown from breaking onto the school’s career top-10 list, and a 22-touchdown season would put him in the top-five of that category as well.

Accomplishing those marks may prove more difficult in 2020 than in recent years considering UCLA will likely play 10 regular season games as opposed to the usual 12, according to a report from The Mercury News on Thursday.

Thompson-Robinson is the first UCLA quarterback to earn a spot on the preseason watch list since Josh Rosen did so back to back in 2016 and 2017. Running back Joshua Kelley earned the honor prior to the 2019 season as well.

The last time a Bruin won the award was in 1967, when quarterback Gary Beban won both the Maxwell Award and the Heisman Trophy in the same season.

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Sam Connon | Sports senior staff
Connon is currently a Sports senior staff writer for the football and men's basketball beats. He was the Sports editor for the 2019-2020 academic year, an assistant Sports editor on the baseball, men's soccer, cross country, men's golf and women's golf beats from 2018-2019 and a reporter on the baseball and women's basketball beats from 2017-2018. Connon also contributes movie reviews for Arts & Entertainment and co-hosts Daily Bruin Sports' weekly podcast, "Out of Bounds." Connon is a rising fourth-year Communication student from Winchester, Massachusetts.
Connon is currently a Sports senior staff writer for the football and men's basketball beats. He was the Sports editor for the 2019-2020 academic year, an assistant Sports editor on the baseball, men's soccer, cross country, men's golf and women's golf beats from 2018-2019 and a reporter on the baseball and women's basketball beats from 2017-2018. Connon also contributes movie reviews for Arts & Entertainment and co-hosts Daily Bruin Sports' weekly podcast, "Out of Bounds." Connon is a rising fourth-year Communication student from Winchester, Massachusetts.
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