The Bruins’ fifth-year starter will try to turn pro this offseason, and his pre-NFL Draft process will kick off in his hometown of Las Vegas.
With the college football offseason just around the corner, one Bruin has already secured himself a spot in a postseason all-star game.
UCLA football quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson has accepted an invitation to the 2023 East-West Shrine Bowl, an annual showcase for graduating players with an interest in playing professionally. The event, which takes place over the course of one week in Las Vegas, culminates in an all-star game at Allegiant Stadium on Feb. 2.
Thompson-Robinson is from Las Vegas and went to Bishop Gorman High School (NV), meaning his journey to the NFL could wind up starting in his hometown. UCLA may also be selected to play in the Las Vegas Bowl on Dec. 17, although the Bruins’ all-time leader in completions, total yards and total touchdowns has yet to confirm whether or not he will be suiting up for any upcoming bowl game.
In 12 games this season, Thompson-Robinson threw for 2,883 passing yards and 25 touchdowns with seven interceptions on 69.8% completion and a 156.6 passer rating. Thompson-Robinson also rushed for a career-high 631 yards with 12 touchdowns.
The Bruins have averaged 39.6 points per game with Thompson-Robinson at the helm of the offense in 2022, good enough to rank No. 9 in the entire FBS.
Across his five-year career in Westwood, Thompson-Robinson has accumulated 10,424 passing yards, 86 passing touchdowns, 1,812 rushing yards and 28 rushing touchdowns. Currently boasting a 9-3 record, the blue and gold could close out their veteran’s career with a bowl victory – something Thompson-Robinson does not have on his collegiate resume.
In July, the Shrine Bowl released the East-West Shrine Bowl 1000, a list of draft-eligible players most likely to be selected for collegiate all-star games in the winter. The list featured Thompson-Robinson, running back Zach Charbonnet, wide receiver Kazmeir Allen, tight end Mike Martinez, center Duke Clemens, guard Jon Gaines II, offensive tackle Raiqwon O’Neal, linebacker Bo Calvert, linebacker Carl Jones, linebacker Darius Muasau and cornerback Azizi Hearn.
The NFLPA Collegiate Bowl and Reese’s Senior Bowl are the other most prominent showcases for draft-eligible players, and invites to those will be sent out and accepted in the coming weeks.
UCLA football sent wide receiver Kyle Philips and safety Quentin Lake to the Shrine Bowl in 2022, and both were mid-round selections in the NFL Draft a few months later.
The Bruins typically host a pro day in March, and the 2023 NFL Draft is set to take place from April 27 to April 29 in Kansas City.