Selected for the France U19 US football team before the pandemic, Dorian Longhini, 20 years old today, colossus of 1.85 m for 100 kg, is temporarily back at the Albi Hurricane. His career stopped dead by the Covid-19, the young champion intends to bounce back quickly in a D1 club. In particular, he has a concrete track in Perpignan, with the Grizzlys Catalans.
Dorian Longhini fell into the pot of American football seven years ago now. “Actually, I was playing rugby at the time and I was getting seriously bored. And one day, driving from the ring road, I saw Hurricane guys training with helmets. I tasted it and I never stopped until I chained the selections for the France U19 team. »
For laymen, American football is a more confidential sport in France than in the United States. Helmeted, protected at the shoulders, knees, thighs, hips and coccyx, these modern gladiators do not hide the love of violence from contact. Dorian is no exception.
“I love the violent aspect, the adrenaline of the fight and the skill with the ball,” he admits. His first selection for the Blues, in U19, encouraged him to give 200% to achieve his ambitions. “I hold the position of linebaker. I’m there to defend and provide enemy pass coverage. With 1.85 m for 100 kg, I am a defensive player who evolves in the heart of the line of defense. In US football, there are two distinct teams of eleven players, one dedicated to attack and the second to defense. I’m the Swiss army knife type. In selection, we are five in this position for three places. The average weight is 120 kg. I compensate for my lack of weight and impact with my speed qualities. »
Best young player of his promotion
After six months at the Pôle Espoirs in Amiens, he left it in March 2020 due to the Covid. “I was deprived of meetings and training for 18 months. At the moment, I coach the cadets and juniors of the Occitanie team. Covid hit me hard. I had to leave the Pôle Espoirs. I was very far from my family. I was barely of age. I still retain the positive with a selection in the middle of the best nationals. I left with top rookie status as a linebaker. »
Translation: Dorian was deemed the best young player in his promotion as a defender. Rather rewarding. And, the champion does not intend to stop there. A year and a half without adrenaline for this competitor who can now dream of a short-term rebound in a French D1 team. “Through Sébastien Jalby, the president of the Hurricanes of Albi, I made a serious touch to the Catalan Grizzlys of Perpignan for next season. It’s an ambitious D1 team where I could run for a starting spot. I was able to talk about it directly with the head coach Enver Ramovic who is seriously interested in my profile. Afterwards, I am also eyeing the Black Panthers of Thonon-les-Bains. »
This last team could even allow Dorian to integrate the European League Football (EFL) created two years ago. After a first cape against Ireland with the Bleuets, Dorian keeps two other objectives in the back of his mind: to find the French team in this post-Covid era, and who knows, one day to integrate his Grail, the prestigious NFL.
“I know that seen from France, it seems inaccessible. But as a big fan of the Seattle Seahawks, I dream of playing under their colors or another US franchise. »
At Dorian Longhini, there is the head and the legs. He envisages, via parallel studies, a retraining as a physical and mental trainer in the sports world. “US football is the passion of my life. But in about ten years, I will hang up my crampons. In the meantime, in Perpignan or elsewhere, I intend to exploit my potential as a linebaker in an optimal way to find the Blues and thus not lose sight of my American dream.
Objective: the European Football League
The European Football League, or ELF, is a professional American football league, which is the first fully professional league in Europe since the disappearance of the NFL on the old continent, in 2007. This league is initially composed of eight teams located in Germany, Poland and Spain and therefore for the moment no French. The Black Panthers of Thonon-les-Bains, targeted by Dorian Longhini (with the Grizzlies of Perpignan), hope to integrate the EFL.