Flashback: Brandon Doman Joins the Brigham Young Cougars Quarterback Club (2001)

For Brigham Young Cougars quarterbacks, few events are greater than the day they become part of the BYU Quarterback Club. Nothing else can better validate all the hard work, the pressure, and the struggles required to lead the BYU offense. Ten years ago, Brandon Doman received this validation as he became the newest member of this exclusive club.

Doman came into the 2001 season with lots of momentum. He was officially named the starter for the final two games of the 2000 season. As the starter, he was able to salvage LaVell Edwards’ swan song. On senior day, and the same day Cougar Stadium was renamed LaVell Edwards Stadium, Doman had 400 yards of total offense (349 passing, 51 rushing) en route to a 37-13 beat down of New Mexico. The following week, Doman led a miraculous final drive that saw him score the game winning touchdown to beat the dreaded Utes, and send LaVell off into the sunset.

On opening day, 2001, Doman and company lit up the scoreboard scoring 70 points. It was the most points scored in one game since 1989. Doman passed for 286 yards (25-31) with 3 touchdowns, and rushed for 115 yards (11 carries) with one more touchdown. Just like that, Doman had BYU off to the races. Through the first 10 games of the season, Doman’s stat line read like this: 200-304 (65.8%), 2656 yards, 24 TD; 475 yards rushing, 8 TD. BYU was a perfect 10-0 and had scored more than 50 points six times.

A showdown with Utah was next. November 17, 2001, would become induction day for Doman. He didn’t have his best day statistically (21-42, 270 yards, 2 TD), but he played with the heart of a champion. Trailing 21-10 with 5:47 to play, Doman took BYU almost the length of the field (92 yards) in just 2:25. The drive finished with a touchdown pass to Luke Staley. A two-point conversion cut the lead to 21-18. BYU got the ball back with 2:11 to play, and needed 59 yards for a go ahead touchdown. Doman completed a big pass to Soren Halladay to move the ball to the 30-yard line. On the next play, three Utah defenders converged on Doman as he ran the option to the right. That left no one on Staley. Doman made the pitch and Staley raced down the sideline for the win.

The win over Utah moved BYU to 11-0, and made them Mountain West Conference champions with a perfect 7-0 record. Doman was now 13-0 as a starter. His season stats were still lacking (2,926 yards passing and 26 TD), but with two games to go, it was a foregone conclusion that his stats would reach an acceptable level. Plus, the nearly 500 yards rushing and 8 TDs mitigated for the lack of passing yards and touchdowns.

Doman proved he was worthy of his membership in the club the next week by going into SEC country and passing for 390 yards (career high) and 5 TD passes (career high) to pull out a 41-38 win over Mississippi State. At 14-0 as a starter, he matched Robbie Bosco for the most consecutive wins as a starter before losing.

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