Having watched the 12 quarterbacks selected to the Elite 11 work and compete for three days, I think Duke commitment Brandon Connette of Santiago High School in Corona, Calif., is one of those many quarterbacks that would have held their own amongst the Elite 11 competitors.
One of the first things I noticed watching Connette in a 7v7 tournament held at Marina High School last week was his command. His command of the huddle; his command of the line of scrimmage, and his command of the play once the ball is snapped.
Connette's knowledge of the offense and his confidence in his ability to call the right play or check at the line, was apparent early in his games. One coach watching mentioned "that's the third different set they've come out in the last three plays."
Confidence and knowledge are terrific intangibles, but the smartest quarterback in the world is still going to struggle without adequate physical ability as well, and Connette still shines once the ball is snapped.
Connette reads the field quickly and has a tight, compact release and a strong arm. He delivers the ball accurately, and he does an excellent job of making quick reads, going from his first option through his second and third faster than most quarterbacks on the high school level.
The Elite 11 can't take every deserving quarterback from around the country, but I have little doubt that Connette would have been right at home among the nation's elite.
2008 Season Highlights