Coming into his senior season, Bishop Diego running back/linebacker Qu’Ran Gossett was eager to build off his strong junior year and lead the Cardinals to new heights as they entered the Marmonte League.
During the first three games of the 2022 season, Bishop Diego outscored opponents 137 to 43 as Gossett ran roughshod through the competition.
“Qu’Ran is stronger than he’s ever been,” said Bishop Diego coach Tom Crawford. “He is going to be a guy that we’re going to have to lean on pretty heavily.”
With 434 yards on 22 carries (for an average of 19.7 yards per carry), Gossett ran through opponents like a man amongst boys. The irony is that Gossett, as a 16-year old senior, is younger than many of his would-be tacklers and most of his classmates.
“I’m going to be honest with you, I don’t like it at all,” Gossett said. “I feel like I’m at a disadvantage. I tried getting held back. My parents didn’t let me, but I think I might either go to prep school or redshirt my freshman year [of college].”
Gossett’s recruitment appears to be going relatively slowly for a player of his caliber. He is listed as a three-star prospect according to 247 Sports, but scholarship offers have yet to materialize.
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The Cardinals faced their toughest test of the season this Saturday against Central High of Fresno and suffered a 38-34 loss. The Grizzlies were intent on slowing down Gossett and fellow Bishop Diego running back junior Misa Paiu, so they stacked the line of scrimmage with talented defenders.
“We weren’t going to let the run beat us,” said Central coach Kyle Biggs. “They had to drive the field, and they didn’t have a lot of big plays.”
The loss to Central was a preview of what Bishop Diego can expect when tough Marmonte League play begins. Gossett finished with 102 yards on 21 carries and two touchdowns, but had to earn every yard.
“I was really impressed with Qu’Ran’s patience and his attitude,” said Crawford. “He’s experienced enough to know that against really good teams, you’re going to have to pound and pound and pound, then you get your opportunities to break one.”
The road will not get any easier for Bishop Diego as they will take on unbeaten St Pius-St. Matthias Academy of Downey in their final non-league contest of the season. The Warriors are ranked 47th in California. Bishop Diego is ranked 58th.
“They’ll be very similar to (Central) in terms of their ability to both run and throw the ball,” said Crawford of the upcoming matchup on Friday. “It’ll be another physical contest.”