Lane Dortch was an All-State linebacker at Fort Gibson High School. He also spent time playing baseball for the Tigers. Somewhere along the way, he ventured up to Tahlequah to take part in one of Northeastern State’s football camps. And that’s when he caught the attention of NSU’s coaching staff.
“We noticed him when he came here for our football camp,” NSU head coach Kenny Evans said. “That’s when we first took a look at him.”
Dortch eventually signed with NSU and redshirted last season. As a freshman in 2013, Dortch, at 6-foot tall and 220-pounds, will be the RiverHawks’ back-up at fullback behind Nick Whitlow. There’s even an outside chance that he sees time at linebacker — whether it’s this year or down the road.
What was it that drew you to NSU?
Being able to be close to my family was one thing. Family comes first. The other thing, just the atmosphere of Tahlequah. I really liked the coaches when I came in; they showed a lot of support.
You throw blocks and lead the way for NSU’s trio of running backs, Joel Rockmore, Terrence Dixon and Zack Simmons. What is it about those guys that makes them so special?
They have a good mental mentality of the game. They know pretty much what they have to do, and they get it done any way they have to. When you have running backs like that, it makes it easy to play.
Would you rather catch a pass or throw a lead block on offense?
There’s nothing better than leading the way and blocking a linebacker. But it’s good to get the ball every now and then. A lot of people overlook the fullback, but they get to show they have athleticism, too.
Do you have something in mind for if/when you score your first collegiate touchdown?
I have no idea. That’s just something we’ll find out when it comes.
You and Jake Gandara played high school football together at Fort Gibson. What’s it like now being rivals with him playing at Central Oklahoma?
Now that he’s playing a UCO, I wish him the best of luck. Now it’s just kind of a handshake. We’ll always have Fort Gibson in our blood.
Have you set any personal expectations for yourself?
I just want to letter for four years at the collegiate level. That’s my main goal, and I think I’ll have a pretty good chance at doing that.