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Jahan Dotson Impresses, Scores First Touchdowns Of Career In Penn State’s Win Over Buffalo

Jahan Dotson’s first-quarter touchdown was one of the only highlights of Penn State’s ugly first half in its 45-13 victory over Buffalo Saturday night.

The sophomore ran his corner route to perfection alongside KJ Hamler, which made it easy for Sean Clifford to find him in the right-hand corner of the end zone for Penn State’s first score of the night.

Not only was Dotson’s score the first of the night for the Nittany Lions, but it was also the first touchdown of his Penn State career. The sophomore was ecstatic to score for the first time under-the-lights at Beaver Stadium.

“It was a big sigh of relief,” Dotson said. “Last year, I played a little bit but couldn’t get it in the end zone. This year, getting [his first career touchdown] in the second game is pretty cool.”

As a freshman last season, Dotson showed enough in the snaps he got that gave Nittany Lion fans plenty to be excited about. The young wide receiver finished with 13 receptions worth 203 yards, including a 58-yard day against Rutgers.

Even after his successful freshman season, Dotson appreciates just how much he’s grown over the offseason — most notably in his route-running savviness. Dotson said he was embarrassed to look back on some of his freshman year tape earlier this summer, but he’s definitely grown leaps and bounds in the route-running department since.

“Route running has been a big thing I’ve been trying to improve upon over this past offseason,” Dotson said. “Just making my cuts more precise and getting the depth of my routes right. That’s the biggest thing for me.”

Dotson certainly proved tonight that he’s become a better route-runner since last season. On top of his first career touchdown, the sophomore got on the board again with a 56-yard reception to give the Nittany Lions a 45-13 lead in the dying minutes of the game.

The wide receiver left his defender in the dust with a nasty double move, giving Clifford a wide-open target to throw to for the final touchdown of the night.

Including his pair of touchdowns, Dotson finished the night with four receptions for a team-leading 109 receiving yards. His huge performance was key for the Nittany Lions’ offense throughout the game, as he proved that he, too, is one of the many valuable playmakers on this roster.

James Franklin was hardly surprised at Dotson’s impressive night. The head coach discussed just how talented the wide receiver truly is at his post-game press conference.

“[Jahan]’s just a really impressive guy,” Franklin said. “He’s one of those guys that the moment he stepped on campus, the game just came easy to him. His body control, ball skills, and ability to change direction — that’s all part of who he is.”

The head coach continued to discuss how the bigger he gets and the sooner he develops a “Big Ten body”, he’ll only continue to get better.

Considering his speed and lateral quickness, it’s hard to imagine just how great he can be if he pairs that with even more size. Currently standing at 5’11” and 175 pounds, Dotson certainly has room to put on more weight and strength over the course of his Penn State career.

Until then, the sophomore will try and continue to blow past cornerbacks and make big plays with his young quarterback throughout this 2019 season. While there was some confusion about who the first touchdown was intended for, Clifford confirmed after the game that he was looking for Dotson all the way.

Nittany Lion fans can hope that the pair’s connection will only grow throughout this 2019 campaign.

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About the Author

Will Pegler

Will is a sophomore majoring in journalism and is Onward State's assistant sports editor. He is from Darien, Connecticut and is a lifelong Penn State football fan. He loves a good 80's comedy movie, The Office, and the New York Yankees and Giants. You can catch some of his ridiculous sports takes on his Twitter @gritdude and yell at him on his email [email protected]

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