Dorris making plays at tight end

An entire summer spent in Bloomington seems to be paying off for tight end Austin Dorris.

The redshirt junior has been one of the standout performers as Indiana seeks to replace top tight end Ian Thomas, and a full offseason with IU’s new strength and conditioning staff may be among the top reasons why.

“(He) volunteered his time,” Indiana offensive coordinator Mike DeBord said of Dorris’ offseason. “And he was one of the guys who the strength coaches said, ‘Hey, you’re going to be surprised how much faster he is.’ And he is faster. He’s playing faster and all that.”

Dorris recently earned praise from quarterback Brandon Dawkins for his work in Sunday’s closed scrimmage, during which he caught a pair of touchdowns.

Dorris played in all 12 games last season, primarily on special teams. The 6-foot-5, 256-pound Ohio native has appeared in 19 overall games after redshirting the 2015 season.

Now, he appears on course to help IU’s offense.

“He had two or three really nice catches in the scrimmage,” DeBord said. “He had a couple of touchdowns that way. Made a really great catch back behind (him) that was really tough. So he’s really improved as a football player.”

4 comments

  1. Dorris was a former QB in HS so I would imagine he is very athletic and could surprise some teams this year. Hendershot was also able to catch TD passes in Sunday’s practice game. My hope is that a couple of TEs can provide the production Thomas would have if he were healthy all season long. A dangerous TE can improve the running game and the passing game. IU has the potential to be a dangerous offense but we will have to wait until the B1G games to know how dangerous.

  2. We’ll find out on September 22nd. MSU is going to be a tough test to start the Big Ten season.

  3. Speaking of tight ends…the Panthers are really high on Ian Thomas. He is described as ‘raw’ but he is pretty much a lock for opening day roster and a likely backup for Greg Olsen.

    He is the talk of the camp.

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