Starkel Gunning For Elite 11 Final Invite

The first day of competition in the Elite 11 Semifinals in Los Angeles came to a close Saturday afternoon at USC's Cromwell Field with Shea Patterson of Calvary Baptist Academy in Shreveport, La., earning an invitation, announced by Trent Dilfer at the end of the afternoon session.

Patterson's invite added to that of Ohio quarterback Messiah deWeaver earlier in the morning session makes 10 quarterbacks that have been invited to Nike's The Opening starting July 5 in Beaverton, Ore., which also serve as the finals of the Elite 11 competition.

There are 30 quarterbacks in Los Angeles for the first ever Elite 11 Semifinals, and according to Elite 11 director Brian Stumpf there will be 18 invited to move on to The Opening, so that means eight more invitations coming.

One quarterback hoping to get one of those last eight is Oklahoma State commitment Nick Starkel out of Argyle, Texas and Liberty Christian Academy. The 6-4, 190-pound Starkel was featured in the afternoon streaming telecast of the competition. He was interviewed and we found out some new things about the young man.

We knew his interest in biomedical engineering as a major at Oklahoma State. "I like being in school and that works because I'm interested in the body and how it works," Starkel told the interviewer from Elite 11.

We did not know he was involved in pole vaulting this spring. He had said he was involved in track but we thought he was running to improve his speed or conditioning.

"I started pole vaulting with the track team and I loved it," Starkel said. "I made state and got fourth. I don't know if the football coaches like it or not, but I had fun with it."

Elite 11 coach and broadcaster Yogi Roth said he liked Starkel because he had a quarterback kind of attitude and he is involved in so many things. He told the group on Friday night that he was in theater in school and was in a production of The Sound of Music. He likes to travel and let's be honest not many quarterbacks pole vault.

The Elite 11 staff mentioned Starkel has really good arm strength and he can "spin" it. In fact, it was brought up that his arm and the velocity he has on his passes matched well with fellow Texan and now finalist Dillon Sterling-Cole.

Now Starkel goes into Sunday looking to put an exclamation point on his LA experience and push his summer Elite 11 travels to include Oregon in July. Judging from the time they showed him on screen Saturday afternoon he was throwing the ball well as he high-fived fellow competitors.

Below is a list of the quarterbacks that have been named finalists and the others competing for the final eight invitations to The Opening.

Elite 11 Finalists
Messiah deWeaver, 6-4, 215, Huber Heights (Wayne), Oh. – Committed to Michigan State

Jett Duffey, 6-0, 180 Mansfield (Lake Ridge), Tex. – Committed to Texas Tech

Jacob Eason, 6-5 ½, 205, Lake Stevens, Wa. – Committed to Georgia

Feleipe Franks, 6-5, 220, Crawfordville (Wakulla), Fla. – Committed to LSU

Jarrett Guarantano, 6-4, 200, Oradell (Bergen Catholic), N.J. – Committed to Tennessee

Dwayne Haskins Jr., 6-3, 198, Potomac (The Bullis School), Md. – Committed to Maryland

Malik Henry, 6-3, 180, Bradenton (IMG Academy), Fla. – Committed to Florida State

Jawon Pass, 6-5, 220, Columbus (Carver), Ga. – Alabama, Auburn, Louisville, North Carolina, Clemson, LSU, Mississippi State, Missouri, North Carolina State, Ohio State, Mississippi, Texas A&M and more

Shea Patterson, 6-2 ½, 198, Shreveport (Calvary Baptist Academy), La. – Committed to Mississippi

Dillon Sterling-Cole, 6-2, 185, Houston (Westfield), Tex. – Arizona State, Boise State, Florida, Houston, Iowa State, Mississippi State, Nevada, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, UCLA, and Utah

Elite 11 Semifinalists
Jack Allison, 6-5, 200, Palmetto, Fla. – Committed to Miami, Fla.

Woody Barrett, 6-2, 225, Winter Garden (West Orange), Fla. – Committed to Auburn

Anthony Brown, Jr., 6-2, 196, Holmdel (St. John Vianney), N.J. – Committed to Boston College

Shane Buechele, 6-2, 185, Arlington (Lamar), Tex. – Committed to Texas

Zerrick Cooper, 6-2, 203, Jonesboro, Ga. – Committed to Clemson

K.J. Costello, 6-4, 213, Rancho Santa Margarita (Santa Margarita Catholic), Calf. – Committed to Stanford

Seth Green, 6-2, 202, Allen, Tex. – Committed to Oregon

Jalen Hurts, 6-2, 196, Channelview, Tex. – Committed to Alabama

D’Erig King, 5-9 ½, 170, Manvel, Tex. – Committed to TCU

Brandon McIlwain, 6-0, 200, Newtown (Council Rock North), Pa. – Committed to South Carolina

Kahi Neves, 6-5, 226, Salt Lake City (Brighton), Utah – Committed to Utah

Jamie Newman, 6-4, 215, Graham, N.C. – Committed to Wake Forest

Patrick O’Brien, 6-3, 230, San Juan Capistrano (San Juan Hills), Calf. – Committed to Nebraska

Brandon Peters, 6-5, 205, Avon, Ind. – Committed to Michigan

Anthony Russo, 6-3, 230, Warminster (Archibald Wood Catholic), Pa. – Committed to Rutgers

Nick Starkel, 6-4, 190, Argyle (Liberty Christian), Tex. – Committed to Oklahoma State

Chazz Surratt, 6-2, 198, Denver (East Lincoln), N.C. – Committed to Duke

Skylar Thompson, 6-2, 193, Independence (Fort Osage), Mo. – Committed to Kansas State

Jake Zembiec, 6-2, 205, Rochester (St. Thomas Aquinas), N.Y. – Committed to Penn State

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