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Dillan Thoms steeped in remarkable football family

Dillan Thoms competes against Acalanes on March 26, 2021. Chris Jackson / Staff Photo
Dillan Thoms competes against Acalanes on March 26, 2021. Chris Jackson / Staff Photo

Dillan Thoms was raised in a football family – a football family steeped in success and tradition at every level.

Thoms, a senior running back at Campolindo, has heard all of the stories from the family. His father played at Fresno State. One grandfather played in the NFL for a decade for the Raiders and Eagles. Another grandfather played quarterback at Cincinnati.

“They just always make big plays,” Thoms said. “And they were a lot bigger than I was and they played, my grandpa played d-tackle and my dad played linebacker. I was smaller, so I felt like I fit running back. They just taught me to hit hard and stuff.”

Hitting hard and punishing opposing players is just what Toms is doing in his final year of high school.

After spending one year in Utah – where he was a teammate of four-star quarterback prospect and current USC freshman Jaxson Dart – Thoms is back in the Bay Area for his hometown Cougars and leading the way for another special season on the gridiron, as they are 4-0 and and coming off wins over rival Acalanes and Amador Valley.

In that Acalanes game, Thoms showed the workhorse he has been throughout this abbreviated spring campaign, he carried the ball a season-most 31 times for 119 yards and two touchdowns. Of those 31 carries, he had 18 in the first half.

It was indicative of who Thoms has been through the first four contests (statistics from the fourth game are not available yet), totaling 20 carries in the first game for 132 yards and then 24 carries in the second week for 129 yards. His season totals now read 422 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 93 carries.

He gives immense credit to the offensive line, all of his teammates and the entire brotherhood at Campolindo for this special spring.

“I’ve been lifting with a couple guys on the team at this guy’s house, and we’ve just been lifting every day,” Thoms said. “We do running back workouts after practice every day, and it just really helps us out during the game situations.”

Thoms said he worked on a lot of cuts, jump cuts, breakaway speed, running back moves and much more entering the campaign. 

“I was in Utah last year, but so I had to kind of learn like a whole new offense this year, but I picked it up pretty easily,” Thoms said. “And it’s worked out pretty good.”

While Thoms said he isn’t getting as many colleges recruiting him because of his size, he’s sticking to the process and hoping to hear from some schools soon for a chance to play football.

And he knows that whatever school gets him will get all of the effort and hard work he has.

“It would mean a ton to me,” Thoms said. “I would love to go to the next level and play football. Football is my life. I just love everything about it.”

For now, though, all Thoms wants is to continue this success he and the Cougars are experiencing.


“I really want to go undefeated this year because the season is shortened,” Thoms said. “We only have six games. Really want to go undefeated, and I just want to get as many yards as I can and play as hard as I can.”

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