The national record-holder for receiving yards in a single game (447), Gehrig Dieter has been prolific at Washington High. He hauled in 75 catches for 1,988 yards and 22 touchdowns his senior year, leading the Panthers to a 10-3 mark. He is considering SMU, Oregon, Auburn and South Florida among others.Read More Below
Gehrig Dieter breaks records. It's that simple. On Aug. 20, the Washington High (Ind.) wideout set an Indiana state record by racking up 373 receiving yards in a single game. On Sept. 2, he broke the national mark by tallying 447.
Dieter remembers the record-breaking moment vividly. He was being pressed by one defender, with two others shadowing him off the line of scrimmage. As he recalls, he "just went up and got the ball." He had come close to the total before -- notching two career 300-yard receiving games -- but overcame triple and quadruple coverage to snap the 421-yard mark set by Rose Bud's (Ark.) J.D. Felice in 2008.
"It shows people that there are a lot of good football players in this area," coach Antwon Jones said of the accomplishment.
Jones knows that better than anyone. A former defensive tackle at Notre Dame, he's mentored Dieter since he was nine, watching as he blossomed athletically. Named after baseball legend Lou Gehrig -- his father, Derek, is a huge Yankees fan -- Dieter played multiple sports growing up, choosing to focus solely on football starting his freshman year.
His record-setting senior season justifies that decision. The 6-3, 200-pounder has excelled both in the classroom and on the gridiron, maintaining a 3.2 GPA as well as becoming a highly touted recruit. He doesn't smoke or drink, and is a tireless worker, taking extra classes in hopes of enrolling early at college. His statistics are astounding: 75 receptions, 1,988 yards and 24 touchdowns.
"I think any skilled athlete should work as hard as they can," he said.
That mentality translates to the locker room, where Dieter has developed a friendly rivalry with linebacker David Perkins, a four-star prospect. Coach Jones frequently catches the two thumb wrestling, attempting to outdo each other in any way. They've both garnered recruiting attention. While Perkins has offers to Arizona, Iowa and LSU, Dieter is considering SMU, Oregon and Auburn, among others.
Though Dieter admits to liking the individual hype, it's not his ultimate goal. He wants his legacy to include a state championship, one that his team could potentially capture on Nov. 26. Following a 10-3 campaign, the Panthers continue their Class 4A title quest in Friday's semifinal against Leo (Ind.).
"I could care less about what kind of records I break," Dieter said. "It's cool, but the goal is to win state."