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June 23, 2008

Seven set for Elite 11

Untitled Document With all of the 12 NIKE Camps and six EA SPORTS Elite 11 regional QB camps officially in the books, the selection process for the 2008 Elite 11 Quarterback Competition is nearing a close as well.

Today, the sixth and seventh invitees to the 2008 Elite 11, to be held July 21-24 in Southern California, are revealed.

This will be the 10th year of the Elite 11, which has developed into the premier quarterback event in the nation. The Elite 11 is a competition designed to give the best high school quarterbacks in the nation some top-level schooling by the best in the business.

Held in Southern California from July 21-24 this year, the Elite 11 will actually feature 12 of the best young high school quarterbacks competing amongst themselves and also receiving tutelage from top college counselors as well as the Elite 11 coaching staff.

The two quarterbacks selected in the first round of the 2007 NFL Draft both have Elite 11 ties, as No. 1 pick JaMarcus Russell attended the Elite 11 twice while in high school (once as a ballboy and once as a selected participant) and also returned as a college counselor this past summer, while Brady Quinn served as a college counselor at a regional camp last summer in Las Vegas.

Additional notable Elite 11 alumni include current NFLers Vince Young, Matt Leinart, Kellen Clemens, Brodie Croyle, Derek Anderson, Kyle Orton, Troy Smith, Trent Edwards, John David Booty, Andre' Woodson and many many more like current college standouts like Tim Tebow, Chase Daniel and Matt Stafford.

Past counselors now litter NFL rosters and include Drew Brees (Saints), Carson Palmer (Bengals), Ben Roethlisberger (Steelers), Jay Cutler (Broncos), Matt Schaub (Texans) and Aaron Rodgers (Packers).

More Elite 11 fun facts: The past four quarterbacks to win the Heisman Trophy, Jason White (counselor in 2004), Leinart (E11 Class of '01), Smith and Tebow ('05 Elite 11 selection) all have Elite 11 ties, as do three of the past four quarterbacks to win BCS titles, Leinart, Vince Young (E11 Class of '02) and Chris Leak (E11 Class of '03).

The high school quarterbacks are selected for the event after an exhaustive evaluation process which includes both film research, an in-person workout (whether at a NIKE Camp or EA SPORTS Elite 11 Regional Camp) and a telephone interview. All told, when totaling both the NIKE Camp and EA SPORTS Elite 11 regional camps, over 1,000 quarterbacks will be evaluated in person this year, not to mention many more on tape.

With that in mind, here's a closer look at the first seven invitees to the 2008 Elite 11!

MATT BARKLEY
6-3, 220 lbs.
Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei
Bio: A prototypical pocket passer that has emerged from the breadbasket of quarterbacks - Southern California. Has been a starter since his freshman year at traditional powerhouse Mater Dei and emerged last year as one of the nation's top passers regardless of class, leading the Monarchs to a 9-2 record last fall and powered an offense that averaged over 40 points per contest. A strong-armed rifleman with great command of the offense and a quick release. Impressed at the Los Angeles NIKE Camp in April with a solid showing, taking home camp QB Co-MVP honors. Threw for 1,349 yards and 11 TDs as a sophomore and 1,685 yards and 10 scores as a freshman in 2005. Is the 25th Golden State QB to make the Elite 11 in its 10 years, and the second from Mater Dei, joining Matt Leinart. Committed to USC in January over early offers from the likes of Florida State, Georgia, Cal, UCLA, Tennessee, Nebraska and many more.
2007 Stats: 213 of 340 passing for 3,560 yards and 35 touchdowns with just nine interceptions in 11 games.
RICHARD BREHAUT
6-2, 206 lbs.
Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) Los Osos
Bio: An accurate and athletic signal caller who seems to do everything well. Emerged as a rising junior with a strong showing at the Berkeley EA SPORTS Elite 11 regional camp last spring, where he captured the Golden Gun Accuracy Challenge title. Is very well-rounded under center, with a strong and accurate arm and very underrated athletic ability. Impressed this spring at both the Berkeley and Las Vegas EA SPORTS Elite 11 regionals, as well as the Stanford Nike Camp, where he earned QB MVP honors. Has led his team to back-to-back league titles as a starter in '06 and '07. Is the 26th quarterback from California to be selected to the Elite 11 in the event's 10 years. Committed to UCLA in late May over offers from Colorado, Oregon State, Arizona and others.
2007 Stats: 156 of 241 passing for 2,248 yards and 22 touchdowns with eight interceptions in 11 games. Also rushed for 556 yards and five scores.
AJ McCARRON
6-4, 190 lbs.
Mobile (Ala.) St. Paul's
Bio: One of the top quarterbacks to emerge in Alabama in the past five to 10 years. A profilic and productive pocket passer with a strong arm and great decision-making ability who led his team to a state title last fall. An underrated athlete with some great upside as he continues to fill out his 6-4 frame. Impressed at the Las Vegas EA SPORTS Elite 11 regional camp, showing good poise, accuracy and consistency. Threw for nearly 2,000 yards and 25 TDs as a sophomore, and has thrown for a combined 51 touchdowns versus just seven interceptions in his two varsity seasons as a starter. Is just the fourth quarterback out of Alabama to make the Elite 11 in its 10 years, and hopes to join past notables like Brodie Croyle and JaMarcus Russell in the NFL someday. Committed to Alabama in May over offers from the likes of Auburn, FSU, Miami, Oklahoma, Tennessee and others.
2007 Stats: Hit 145 of 232 passes for 2,532 yards with 26 TDs and just three interceptions.
ZACH METTENBERGER
6-5, 224 lbs.
Watkinsville (Ga.) Oconee County
Bio: A big pocket-passer with perhaps the strongest arm in the Class of 2009. Emerged as a rising junior with a strong showing at the Athens Nike Camp last spring as a quarterback with all the physical tools to be a star at the next level. Has the size and decent feet to move within the pocket, combined with great wrist snap and the rifle-arm to make any throw. Put forth a dominant effort at the recent Tuscaloosa Nike Camp to take home QB MVP honors over a very deep group of signal callers. Threw for 671 yards and four TDs as a sophomore, appearing in five games. Is just the fourth quarterback out of the Peach State to make the Elite 11 in its 10 years, joining notables like Atlanta Falcon reserve D.J. Shockley and recent South Carolina grad Blake Mitchell. Committed to Georgia in February over offers from Florida State, Boston College and others.
2007 Stats: 117 of 189 passing for 1,333 yards and 10 touchdowns with nine interceptions in 11 games.
AARON MURRAY
6-1, 205 lbs.
Tampa (Fla.) Plant
Bio: A superb talent with all the tools and intangibles to be a star on the next level. Burst onto the scene last fall at Plant in his first year as a starter, setting a state single season record with 51 touchdown passes while leading the Panthers to an 11-2 record on his way to Class 4A all-state and Mr. Football honors. An accurate, well-groomed passer with very underrated athleticism and a strong and accurate throwing arm. Impressed at the Gainesville NIKE Camp in April with a solid showing, taking home camp QB MVP honors. Played some safety as a sophomore behind current Miami freshman QB Robert Marve and also served as an underclassman "ballboy" at last summer's Elite 11. Is the 14th Florida QB to make the Elite 11 in its 10 years. Committed to Georgia over 50 scholarship offers from the likes of Florida, UCLA, Miami, LSU, FSU and many others.
2007 Stats: 201 of 329 passing for 4,013 yards and 51 touchdowns with just seven interceptions. Also rushed 93 times for 932 yards and 12 touchdowns in 13 games.
TOM SAVAGE
6-4, 217 lbs.
Springfield (Pa.) Cardinal O'Hara
Bio: A well-schooled pocket passer with a good feel for the quarterback position. Very consistent with good feet and a strong and accurate arm. Had two healthy weeks and eventually missed half of his junior season with a broken foot but still managed to put up solid numbers in a Wing-T offense. Impressed at both the Penn State Nike Camp and Elite 11 regional camp, taking home QB MVP honors at NIKE and shining once he got going. Passed for 1,573 yards and 11 TDs as a sophomore starter in 2006. The younger brother of former Wisconsin and current Hofstra QB Bryan Savage. Is the 6th Pennsylvania QB to make the Elite 11 in its 10 years, and the second from the greater Philadelphia area. Committed to Rutgers over offers from Georgia, Miami, Tennessee, Louisville and many more.
2007 Stats: 72 of 136 passing for 909 yards and eight touchdowns in parts of six games.
EUGENE SMITH
6-3, 182 lbs.
Miramar (Fla.)
Bio: One of the top natural passers ever to emerge from talent-rich South Florida. A true pocket passer with a strong and accurate arm. Earned second team all-state honors and Broward County Offensive Player of the Year honors last fall despite missing three games. Impressed at both the Gainesville and Miami NIKE Camps in April, taking home camp QB MVP honors in South Florida and matching Murray throw-for-throw in Gainesville. Was an honorable mention all-county pick as a sophomore, throwing for 1,108 yards and totaling 11 TDs while splitting time, and was very impressive as a underclassman at the '07 Miami Nike Camp. Is the 15th Florida QB to make the Elite 11 in its 10 years, and the first ever out of Broward County. Strongly considering Boston College, South Florida, Florida State, LSU and Louisville out of over 30 offers.
2007 Stats: Passed for 2,222 yards and 25 TDs with just three interceptions while rushing for seven more scores in just seven full games.

It has been a good past month for Los Osos (Calif.) quarterback Richard Brehaut. After a slow start to his recruitment, the talented signal caller saw the scholarship offers pour in during the spring evaluation period, culminating in landing his dream offer from UCLA at the end of May.

The last time we saw Brehaut, he was winning QB MVP honors at the NIKE Camp at Stanford and he picked up another huge honor this past weekend at the final Elite 11 regional workout in Las Vegas, being invited to the national Elite 11 following the event.

"Oh man, that has been a big goal of mine for awhile now," Brehaut said of earning the Elite 11 nod.

"That's why I came out here to Vegas this weekend, to try and earn a spot at the camp. I've heard a lot about the camp but it really became a dream of mine my sophomore year when I attended one of the Elite 11 regional workouts.

"I'm looking forward to getting out there and competing against the other top quarterbacks and learning as much as I can. I'm just honored to be a part of the camp and it has been an amazing last month for me.

"First committing to UCLA, my dream school, and now being selected to the Elite 11, I really couldn't ask for anything more."

Like Brehaut, Mobile (Ala.) St. Paul's standout AJ McCarron made the long trip west to Las Vegas hoping to impress and earn a ticket to California in July.

The 6-4, 190 pound Alabama commit, who's impressed on the field the past two seasons with over 4,500 yards, 51 TDs and just seven interceptions combined in '06 and '07 and led St. Paul's to a state title last fall, also impressed on Saturday, earning a spot at the Elite 11 finals in July.

"That's why I came out here, hoping to make it, and it's a blessing to make it, I love it," said McCarron upon being selected to the Elite 11.

"I think it will be a great opportunity to see where I stand in the nation amongst the top quarterbacks and just a great experience overall. I've never been out to California so I'm going to try and get out there early and do a little bit of sight-seeing as well."

Stay tuned for further 2008 Elite 11 invitee announcements in the next 10 days as the 12 participants for the finals will be finalized!

SSFootball.com, the exclusive home of the Elite 11, will have exclusive previews and video content leading up to the Elite 11, so stay logged onto to follow all the action!



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