SANTA CLARA, Calif. – The Elite 11 camp circuit offers quarterbacks the unique opportunity to take in one-on-one coaching with some experienced, high profile instructors. Head Elite 11 coach Trent Dilfer leads the coaching at the event and brings a Super Bowl champion’s perspective to the position.
Morgan Mahalak had arguably the day's top performance.
Following Friday’s California regional event, Dilfer talked about a few of the top performers from the day and what they were able to do to separate themselves as well as what they need to do to improve.
We named Oregon commit Morgan Mahalak the top performer of the day and despite limited time in varsity competition (he spent the 2012 season behind Cal signee Jared Goff), Dilfer concurred that Mahalak was one of the day’s top performers.
Dilfer on Mahalak: “Morgan had a very good day. Lots of energy in his body. My favorite thing that Morgan did today was, he hasn’t had a whole lot of huge football moments and this was a big football moment for him and he responded very well. His talent is undeniable. He’s got great energy in his feet, great energy in the ball. He doesn’t try to overpower you all the time. I was very impressed with Morgan.”
Vanderbilt commit K.J. Carta-Samuels is another prospect that competed at the Elite 11 event and excelled despite an uncommon background. For Carta-Samuels, it’s his option offense that limits his profile as a national quarterback but Dilfer suggested that those circumstances indicate tremendous potential.
Dilfer on Carta-Samuels: “He’s got such a high ceiling because he hasn’t really been trained. With limited training, he’s very talented. He’s worked very hard through this process which I’ve liked. He’s embraced the process. He performed very well overall today.”
One of the biggest surprises of the event on Friday was the performance of Miami commit Brad Kaaya. The 6-4 quarterback out of Chaminade High School was consistent all day long and caught Dilfer’s eye as well as one of the day’s top performers.
Dilfer on Kaaya: “Brad did a nice job. He’s got a great personality. He’s a very physical kid. He locates the ball very well. He needs to get a little more rotation on it, needs to control it but obviously he made the finals (of the California regional) because he had a very good day.”
One of the longest commutes to compete at the event came from Richmond, Va. native Wilton Speight. The Michigan commit was also one of the biggest prospects in attendance with regard to his physical stature and Dilfer noted that his size is both his strength and his weakness at this point.
Dilfer on Speight: “He had a nice day. He’s obviously a very physical kid, tall, strong. I think he’s got to get more organized. Everything’s just got to get more organized for him to be consistent. That’s typical for a lot of linear guys. There’s a lot of moving parts.”
Also in the category of ‘big-arm on a big body’ is the nation’s number one quarterback, Keller Chryst. While Chryst had a disappointing day in some regards, his talent was evident and so too was his football acumen as Dilfer evaluated him throughout the day.
Dilfer on Chryst: “Keller is obviously one of the top kids in the class. Keller didn’t have a great day but he had a good day. Keller’s the most advanced passer out here. He knows the different throws. His pedigree is advanced (father is 49ers QB coach Geep Chryst and uncle is Pitt head coach Paul Chryst). Like Wilton (Speight), his challenge as a long guy is staying organized with things and he lost his organization at times.”