Trent Dilfer Heads Up Elite 11: The Regionals (Aug. 12) and Elite 11: The Finals (Aug. 19), Part of ESPN’s YQB Programming Initiative
For high school quarterbacks entering their senior year, their top goal is to be named one of the Elite 11 quarterbacks in the country—an honor that includes some of the most successful names in football including Mark Sanchez, Vince Young, Tim Tebow, Matt Stafford and Josh Freeman. ESPN cameras captured the top high school QBs while they competed in ESPN High School’s Elite 11 regional camps across the country as they vied for an invite to finals week at Pepperdine University. The 24 invitees were then put to the test in California during The Finals, each hoping to be chosen as one of the Elite 11.
The results will be aired on ESPN’s two-episode series Elite 11: The Regionals, which airs Friday, August 12, at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN, and Elite 11: The Finals, which airs on Friday, August 19, at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN.
For the first time in the 13-year history of this camp, an invitation to The Finals did not secure a player a place in the Elite 11, as 24 quarterbacks were chosen to compete. The QBs invited to The Finals at Pepperdine University and featured in the Elite 11 series are:
(*Named to Elite 11 class of 2011; **Also named MVP)
|Player||High School||Town||College Commit|
|*Austin Appleby||Hoover||North Canton, Ohio||Purdue|
|Connor Brewer||Chaparral||Scottsdale, Ariz.||Texas|
|**Neal Burcham||Greenbrier||Greenbrier, Ark.||n/a|
|Tyler Cameron||Jupiter||Jupiter, Fla.||South Florida|
|Preston Dewey||St. Andrew’s Episcopal||Austin, Texas||Miami (Fla.)|
|*Shane Dillon||El Cajon Christian||El Cajon, Calif.||Colorado|
|*Bart Houston||De La Salle||Concord, Calif.||Wisconsin|
|*Chad Kelly||St. Joseph’s||Buffalo, NY||Clemson|
|Gunner Kiel||Columbus East||Columbus, Ind.||Indiana|
|*Zach Kline||San Ramon Valley||Danville, Calif.||California|
|*Jeff Lindquist||Mercer Island||Mercer Island, Wash.||Washington|
|**Tanner Mangum||Eagle||Eagle, Idaho||BYU|
|Tyler Matthews||McPherson||McPherson, Kan.||TCU|
|Cyler Miles||Mullen||Denver, Colo.||Washington|
|Tyler O’Connor||Lima Central Catholic||Lima, Ohio||Michigan State|
|Nick Patti||Dr. Phillips||Orlando, Fla.||Boise State|
|*Zeke Pike||Dixie Heights||Fort Mitchell, Ky.||Auburn|
|Patton Robinette||Maryville||Maryville, Tenn.||North Carolina|
|Jake Rodrigues||Whitney||Rocklin, Calif.||Oregon|
|Grant Rohach||Moorpark||Moorpark, Calif.||Iowa State|
|Patrick Towles||Highlands||Fort Thomas, Ky.||Kentucky|
|*Chad Voytik||Cleveland||Cleveland, Tenn.||Tennessee|
|Travis Wilson||San Clemente||San Clemente, Calif.||Utah|
|**Jameis Winston||Hueytown||Hueytown, Ala.||Florida State|
The Elite 11 judging staff, comprised of former athletes and recruiting analysts, evaluated each quarterback’s understanding of chalk talk, ability to be coached, and skills on the field based on basic QB on-field drills, 7-on-7 play and playbook knowledge. Former Super Bowl champion and current ESPN football analyst Trent Dilfer provided the QB’s with a playbook prior to camp and ran them through the film sessions, meetings and competitions that took place during the week. Additionally, Dilfer was the lead evaluator in selecting the final roster spots alongside the other Elite 11 coaches: Former Jets QB Ken O’Brien, Private QB coach George Whitfield, ESPN HS Director of Events Brian Stumpf, Nike FB Head Coach Matt James, and college football analyst/former USC QB Coach Yogi Roth.
“Elite 11 was one of the most gratifying experiences of my life,” said Dilfer. “To see the investment that the kids made, that the coaches made, and all the auxiliary people involved made was incredible. I’ve never seen young people grow so much as players in such a short amount of time.”
Part of ESPN’s Year of the Quarterback programming initiative, the Elite 11 series will provide an in-depth look at this year’s most sought-after high school quarterbacks—and possibly the best NFL passers of the future.
About Year of the Quarterback
Year of the Quarterback (YQB) is a year-long, in-depth examination of one of the most critical, coveted and talked-about positions in all of sports with content across all platforms including television, radio, ESPN.com and ESPN The Magazine. YQB will delve into the topic to tell the story of the quarterback on and off the field and find a deeper understanding of the position, including the leadership qualities, recruitment and issues of race from the “blue chip” high school recruit to the Heisman hopeful and the NFL legend.
About ESPN High School
ESPN High School is a multiplatform business which serves high school student-athletes and high school sports fans. It provides high school student-athletes with recognition, resources, information and inspiration to improve their skills and achieve their goals, while offering fans compelling content across platforms. ESPN High School assets include ESPNHS Guy and Girl magazines, with special issues for football, basketball, track and recruiting; ESPNHIGHSCHOOL.com; mobile and social media products (Facebook and Twitter); and more than 160 high school events including Elite 11, Elite 24, National High School Invitational, Area Code Baseball and Nike Football Combines and Nike Football Training Camps. ESPN High School is uniquely positioned to provide high school student-athletes and their fans with compelling high school sports content across multiple ESPN platforms.
Jennifer Cingari, ESPN Content Development, 212-515-1084
Colleen Lynch, ESPN High School, 860-766-4235