Dilfer Call Elite 11 Talent Real Good

ARLINGTON, Texas - One aspect of Elite 11 competition at the regional level is certain, when you have over 70 quarterbacks going through drills and throwing different pass routes for close to three and a half hours it is virtually impossible to see enough to make any absolute decisions on which quarterbacks are best.

Former NFL Super Bowl winning quarterback Trent Dilfer is the head coach and face of Elite 11. Dilfer will agree with that but he and his staff do the best that they can to evaluate and also pay attention and work to try to teach and help each high school quarterback participating to get better.

In the end on Sunday in AT&T Stadium, Dilfer and his staff selected seven quarterbacks to compete in the crescendo event at Elite 11 known as the pressure cooker. Each quarterback gets an announced amount of time under two minutes with one or no time outs. He throws five routes (slant, deep out, post, corner, and seam) covering a total of 60 yards.

The first quarterback to go was Allen, Texas prodigy Kyler Murray, the son of former Texas A&M quarterback Kevin Murray. The younger Murray guided Allen to a state championship last season and had already earned a trip to the Elite 11 finals at Nike's The Opening in July. Murray did that last month at the Dallas area Nike Football Training Camp. Murray, who has an excellent arm despite his 5-11 height, was sharp hitting three of five throws. The out route was out of bounds and the corner was just off.

Jarrett Stidham of Stephenville, Texas is already committed to Texas Tech. He earned today's invitation to the finals at The Opening. He completed four of five passes in "the cooker." Stidham displayed a strong arm and only missed when he was wide on the post.

My observations were that Ben Hicks of Waco (Midway), Texas and L.G. Williams of Cibolo (Steele), Texas, the final two quarterbacks in the pressure cooker, were as good as any. The 6-2, 190-pound Hicks completed every throw and did it with top velocity causing the receiver on the slant to almost lose his feet from the short rocket. Hicks just committed to Houston on Friday. He confirmed afterwards he had been hearing from Oklahoma State but was never offered a scholarship. Hicks threw for over 3,700 yards and 36 touchdowns last season.

Williams was equally as impressive, showing great velocity and accuracy on his five throws. After he completed the final pass on the money he was jumping up and chest bumping most of the Elite 11 staff and some of the other competitors. Williams reportedly has one scholarship offer from Texas State, but he'll be getting more.

"As usual, Texas was real good and I thought there were some guys that elevated themselves real quick, guys not everybody knows about," Dilfer said afterwards. "Guys like Dominic DeLira and L.G. Williams and Ben Hicks of Waco Midway. We've known about Ben, but Ben was as good as anybody out there today.

"You saw the guys in the final. They were consistent in each drill, they took the coaching, and they did everything we asked them to do and they had great attitudes in doing so. I thought it was really good. Then the guys that ended up in the second and third line had a good day. There is a lot of talent in the second and third line too."

Of the others in the pressure cooker, Ross Trail of Wynne, Ark., completed three of five tosses and Chason Virgil of West Mesquite High School completed four of five but did not have as much velocity. DeLira, as mentioned by Dilfer, is out of Lake Travis and he completed two of five passes but should have had four completions.

Oklahoma State commitment John Kolar was in Arlington, and he was according to Dilfer in the next flight of quarterbacks behind those competing in the pressure cooker. Dilfer said he had his eyes on Kolar.

"His tape is better than his field performance today," Dilfer added. "I think what happens in some kids is they haven't been in that environment a lot and they tighten up. I think that's what happened to John today."


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