Jacob Park expected to compete hard at Saturday’s Elite 11, but he wasn’t planning on it being such a learning experience.
The Scout 300 quarterback out of Stratford High (Goose Creek, S.C.) was able to glean some information from the camp’s coaches to help his mechanics, and is focused on that during the spring before he hits the recruiting trail in June to visit Florida State, Georgia, Alabama and Virginia Tech.
“I learned that my feet aren’t as good as I thought they were,” the 6-foot-4, 205-pound Park said. “I need to get my elbow higher. They said I would get a lot more velocity on my ball if I fix a little thing with my footwork and then if I get my elbow higher.
“I got a lot more than I thought I was going to get out of it. I didn’t know I needed to work that much on my mechanics. That’s a good coach right there, coach Jordan Palmer.”
Even though Park said his mechanics need improving, there are plenty of high-caliber schools who are willing to work with the talent he will bring to a campus.
Because quarterbacks are committing and filling up slot, he said his “active” offers sit near a dozen.
“I’m going to Florida State this summer,” he said. “I’m going back to Alabama and Georgia, and I’m going to Virginia Tech.”
Of those four schools, Florida State is the lone school he is yet to visit, but he is looking forward to meeting up with the coaching staff.
“(Coach) Jimbo (Fisher) has a good history of putting quarterbacks in the NFL,” Park said. “That was what got me interested there. The further I look into the school, the more it has to offer. I would like to major in sports management, and I heard they are one of the top sports management schools in the nation. Putting all that together, it’s a good spot.”
Alabama offered Park less than two months ago, and he said not much needs to be said when the school doing the recruiting has a coach as successful as Nick Saban.
“Alabama is Alabama,” he said. “It speaks for itself. I deal with (offensive coordinator/quarterbacks) coach (Doug) Nussmeier and (assistant) coach (Chris) Rumph.”
The school closest to Park’s home is Georgia, which is one of the appealing aspects of the school.
“Georgia is one of the top SEC schools. I like (offensive coordinator/quarterbacks) coach (Mik) Bobo, and coach Bobo likes me. I like Georgia, and it’s closer to home.”
Virginia Tech isn’t as close, but it does offer a piece of family for Park.
“I have family in Christiansburg, right outside of Blacksburg,” Park said. “(Offensive coordinator/quarterbacks) coach (Scott) Loeffler was recruiting me at Auburn, and he’s at Virginia Tech right now. It just seems like a place I can live for four years.”
Although other quarterbacks are making decisions and slots are filling up, Park is willing to take his time.
“Nobody is going to pressure me to make my decision,” he said. “That’s one of the biggest decisions of my life. If you pressure me to make my decision, I guess that wasn’t the place for me.
“I will probably make my decision toward the end of June.”