Three of the nation’s top quarterback prospects are from the Mid-Atlantic region and all three will be at the national Elite 11 finals camp starting July 18 in Redondo Beach, Cal.
Christian Hackenberg (Fork Union, Va. and Penn State), Wayne Olsen (Wayne, N.J. and Miami) and Shane Cockerille (Baltimore and Maryland) will be competing with 22 other high school quarterbacks. All but one of the 25 has committed to a big-time college program The event, run by ESPN and coached by some recognizable names such as head coach Trent Dilfer, will be televised on ESPN.
The 25 participants won their way there by winning a regional competition or were selected because of their high performance (although not necessarily winning) at those regional competitions.
Regionals were held in Dallas, Atlanta, New York, Columbus, Oakland and Las Vegas. The competition at regionals consisted of quarterbacks throwing routes to receivers and accuracy competitions. The finals are a lot more intense with more drills and playbook knowledge coming into play.
Hackenberg is 6-foot-4 and 215 pounds from Fork Union, Va. and has committed to Penn State. He is the number one rated quarterback by ESPN while also being ranked highly by 247Sports, Rivals and Scout. Hackenberg is a pro style passer that runs a 4.8 40-yard dash.
He finished second in the Las Vegas regional and was the awarded the first wild card berth into the finals.
The playbook study is one of the biggest differences between Elite 11 and other camps as Hackenberg noted in an interview last month in which he had his Elite 11 playbook in hand.
“I just got the playbook and it’s not easy,” Hackenberg said at the time. “But that’s the biggest thing I have to do to get ready. I have to learn the playbook.”
He has also affirmed his commitment to Penn State to several outlets despite the media frenzy in wake of the Freeh report. He says he is looking forward to playing for new coach Bill O’Brien.
“There’s a new energy with the program,” said Hackenberg, who was born in Tamaqua, Pa. and grew up in northeastern Pennsylvania before moving to Virginia. “Coach O’Brien has brought that and he’s the biggest reason I’m going to Penn State.”
Olsen is a 6-2, 195 pounder that is headed to Miami. He is ranked as the seventh top quarterback prospect by ESPN but the fifth overall QB prospect by 247Sports and the first overall in the state of New Jersey. Olsen, whose brother played tight end at Miami, had offers from 19 schools total including the likes of Arkansas, Auburn, Michigan, Florida, Florida State and Wisconsin to name a few.
Olsen won the New York regional to earn is spot in the national finals.
Committed to Maryland, Cockerille is the 21st ranked quarterback by ESPN. He is 6-2, 207 and runs a 4.9 40. Cockerille also had scholarship offers from Michigan, Virginia, Navy and Temple.
The future Terrapin competed in the New York regional and reached the final six of the competition. He was awarded a wild card entry into the finals.
Other quarterbacks attending will be Max Browne (USC), Shane Morris (Michigan), Cooper Bateman (Alabama), Cody Thomas (Oklahoma), Tyrone Swoopes (Texas), Brice Ramsey (Georgia), Malik Zaire (Notre Dame), Troy Williams (Washington), J.T. Barrett (Ohio State), Asiantii Woulard (South Florida), Riley Ferguson (Tennessee), Jared Goff (Cal), Anthony Jennings (LSU), Johnny Stanton (Nebraska), Austin Allen (Arkansas), Davis Webb (Texas Tech), Zack Greenlee (undecided), DeVante Kincaid (Ole Miss), Joshua Dobbs (Arizona State), Luke Del Rio (Oklahoma State), Danny Etling (Purdue) and Zach Allen (Syracuse).
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