Tim DeMorat quietly became a quarterback who completed 301 of 458 passes for 4,561 yards and a school and Patriot League record 53 touchdowns for the Fordham Rams. Up at Rose Hill in the Bronx they know him.
But to those who follow college football, DeMorat is not your everyday name due partly to Fordham competing in the Patriot League and NCAA Division 1 conference known as the FCS. He has the numbers and been touted as one of the best quarterbacks in the nation.
Fordham did not win the Patriot League Conference and came up short to Holy Cross, but the Rams will continue their season Saturday afternoon when they travel to Durham, to face the University of New Hampshire in their first round at-large bid of the 2022 FCS Championship.
The Rams 13th in the latest AFCA FCS Coaches’ Top 25 poll finished a 9-2 season, 5-1 in the conference with their other loss at Ohio in their third game of the season. In that loss to a Division 1 school, DeMorat passed for 503 yards and threw for six touchdowns.
That was only the beginning of what became a record breaking season up at Rose Hill. It became a routine, four or more touchdowns per game and over 400 yards in passing and not easy to accomplish no matter what conference in the NCAA or FCS.
Thing is, for this senior and at Fordham there is talk about DeMorat on the radar come April during the NFL draft. At Rose Hill, the scouts took notes, gave him a good look, and they should.
In a 52-38 Patriot League final season win over Colgate at Jack Coffey Field last Saturday, DeMorat completed 33 of 51 passes for 454 yards and six touchdowns, tying his own school record. The game was DeMorat’s 33rd career 200-yard passing game, topping the Fordham record of 26 set by John Skelton (2006-2009), his 20th career 300-yard passing game, breaking Mike Nebrich’s (2012-2014) school record of 15, and his sixth 400-yard passing game of the season, his eight overall, breaking Nebrich’s school record of seven.
He was named the 2022 Patriot League Offensive Player of the Year on Tuesday, his third consecutive Offensive Player of the Year award.
He has become the talk of Rose Hill. Two weeks ago, when the Fordham basketball Rams opened their season at home, a quarterback who opted to play football over baseball, took part in a half-time shooting contest from mid court.
DeMorat, from nearby Merritt, NY came close to converting the shot. He got an ovation for his efforts, though Rams followers have become accustomed to the 6 ft-4 inch- 220 pound athlete to taking the long shot with his accurate arm
And with another game on the horizon, Tim DeMorat has another goal of leading the Rams to an FCS championship knowing that the NFL draft and his name could be called.
“I think we should not worry about the stats, focus one win at a time,” he said. “Focusing on what I got here, always a dream. The NFL, that’s a goal. I’m not worrying about anything like that right now. Just college right now.”
This has developed from a culmination of effort and chemistry, a familiarity with a Rams roster that saw their season scrapped in 2020 when the Pandemic hit. DeMorat, though, found his receivers, allowed the running game to take over last season.
“After a season of being off due to the pandemic we played three games in the spring going 2-1,” he said. “That really sparked confidence in us going into the 2021 season. We knew we had something going. We had a good run that season with a 6-game win streak. Offensively that was our best season.”
The growth continued as Fordham continued to win their share of games in the league.
“That’s the goal for this team,” he said when asked about what was accomplished with this first-round playoff game. “Growth, leadership, gelling with the guys. It’s been amazing playing with these guys and coaches.”
So this is no longer about records. The Rams are seeking a championship and they have all the pieces despite losing that league championship to Holy Cross in overtime, (53-52), when DeMorat completed 19 of 38 passes and five touchdowns. Then he broke the Patriot League single game mark set by Fordham’s Mike Nebrich in 2013.
A pocket pass quarterback who could be the next NFL draft pick from Fordham, first since running back Chase Edmonds, a fourth round selection of the Arizona Cardinals in 2018.
He is the unknown and local college quarterback. Saturday afternoon, though, another 400-yard passing game in the playoffs and the nation will be watching.
Rich Mancuso: Twitter@Ring786 Facebook.com Watch “Sports with Rich” live on Tuesday Nights at 8pm EST on The SLG Network/Youtube with Robert Rizzo Available on Apple Podcasts and Spotify under The SLG Network.