Competition heating up for Day Two of QB Academy

As the second annual Quarterback Academy hit its second day, the learning went on, but as the sun was rising, it wasn't just the air that was heating up. The competition, staged in parts spread throughout the three day camp; was challenging the young and younger, the names and unsung slingers in a day that would see the favorite find victory and defeat.

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Freeman amongst leaders

Going into this camp as a future Husker, you know the pressure is there. Ask Harrison Beck, who for a time Sunday evening got to see in person what is almost an event, one that he was a part of just a year ago.


Now, it's Josh Freeman instead of Harrison Beck and the stout 6 foot, 6 inch signal caller got the roller coaster treatment in the three competitions that were a part of the camp on Saturday.


First, it was the long-distance competition, Freeman's size, big arms and history of having thrown the ball over 60 yards seemingly making him an odds-on favorite to take this one and run.


Someone forgot to tell a few of the other competitors, especially North Platte 's Nathan Enderle as he chucked the ball an academy-record 70 yards, followed by an almost as impressive 67.


Not to be totally outdone, Papillion's Steve Heiman; just a junior, tossed the ball 66.


Freeman did manage to best his top throw last year of 62 with a long-toss of 64, but it only got him third this time around, whereas last year it was good enough for second.


Not to be deterred, Freeman and company went into the second round of the competition, this time a variety of throws to stationary targets, but there was a catch:

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L. D. Crow

The ball was wet


Testing their ability to grip a ball with a decidedly slipperier surface, the advantage seemed to go to the participants that had the bigger hands.


Josh Freeman was certainly one of those and he didn't disappoint, taking first in this event with 12 points, followed by a three-way tie between L.A. Baptist's Tyler Robertson, Countryside high school's L.D. Crow and Lincoln's own Austin Cassidy, son of the organizer of this event, recruiting coordinator Tim Cassidy. The triumvirate each posted a score of 10.


That had to have left Freeman in a comfortable position, sitting firmly amongst the leaders in the overall standings, but coming soon would be a new competition, this one including trash cans mounted on vertical poles.


It was a series of throws, some to the aforementioned trash comes, some to standing nets, but all with a variety of throwing positions; the three, five and seven-step drops. The deeper the drop, the deeper the target, one actually standing over 20 yards away and another 20 yards out from the center of the field.


And just when it seems the names are going to take over, it's one of the unsung slingers that rises to the top, Strafford, Missouri 's Richie Roepke taking the overall on the evening, posting 15 points, while Josh Freeman came in second with 10.


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Contending for title: Mark Desin

Following him were Billings, Montana's Mark Desin, who continues to threaten for the overall lead, along with another relatively new name; Omaha's Tomy Johnson accompied by Nathan Enderle.


That finished up the evening and the early returns are that the favorite coming in does indeed lead the overall event, but only by the slightest of margins. This one appears as if it will go down to the wire, the result hinging on who wins the "Ultimate Challenge" tomorrow.


Now, while quarterback coach Jay Norvell was not willing to disclose to the actual nature of the event and what particular drills it would include, it's reasonable to assume that it will be a combination of everything they have done up to this point.


If that's the case, Freeman's standing at this point makes him once again the man to beat come the last day of the Academy.


Following the last event, we'll bring you the results, who stood out and what we liked about a lot of the quarterbacks we saw. There are some names you have been seeing that will most undoubtedly be on the list, but there's a few that may surprise.

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Enderle right behind Freeman for lead


Yes, the Academy is usually dominated by the older players, but this year, it's many of the younger players that are taking the bull by the horns. That's what could make not just this year's academy special, but if every one of these field generals come back next year for the third QB Academy, it's going to make it even more-so.


And we'll bring you our top ten of the three-day experience, plus the usual photo galleries, comments from the quarterbacks and we'll even throw in a few interviews, plus possibly a special interview following all of that.


Stay tuned for tomorrow as we see if Josh Freeman can stay on top at this year's quarterback face-off.

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