ALISO VIEJO, CA – On Monday, he was the 12th man. By Tuesday, he was THE man.
Adam Pittser of Richmond, Ill., is the surprise story so far this week at the Elite 11 quarterback competition, a four-day football camp that showcases 11 hot quarterback prospects - plus one lesser-known prospect - from around the country. The camp kicked off Monday at Soka University.
Pittser was that lesser-known prospect, selected as the 12th man to the camp, but his strong arm and pinpoint accuracy could snatch camp MVP honors from highly-regarded Florida commit Jeff Driskel. Pittser, a 6-foot-1, 187-pounder from Burton High School, has a two-star rating on Scout.com, but isn't ranked by position, nor does he have a bio posted. (Expect that to change, and soon.) Driskel, by comparison, has a four-star rating on Scout.com.
"I'm flying real low under the radar right now," Pittser chuckled after his performance on Tuesday. That self-evaluation may change when camp ends Thursday -- Pittser was one of the first quarterbacks approached by the media after the workouts ended.
"I'm from a really small town, small school, 800 guys in our school, small-time football, and we run a Delaware Wing-T offense ... a run-oriented offense", Pittser said. "Going into this year, I wasn't really expecting any offers. My whole goal was to try and walk on into one of those [Division 1] schools."
So far, Pittser has offers from Illinois State, Ball State, Central Michigan and Western Michigan, and while his biggest dream would be to play on a BCS conference team, he says anywhere he can play football would make him happy. But when pushed, he admitted he loves Wisconsin and the Big Ten.
Other notes from camp (Player/ School commit)
Archie Bradley, Oklahoma - Big arm and good size. Bradley's a dual athlete -- he throws a 97 mph fastball -- and puts plenty of zip on the football as well.
Jeff Driskel, Florida - Driskel has a strong arm and a very quick release. He has a great build (6-foot-4, 224) and good athleticism, can pass well on the run and has excellent escapability. He's the complete package.
Cody Kessler, USC - Kessler was very consistent in accuracy and throws a very tight spiral. He displayed excellent footwork and looks very comfortable throwing on the run.
Teddy Bridgewater, Miami - Bridgewater's exciting to watch. His dual-threat skills remind you of Terrelle Pryor. Bridgewater won Monday's black jersey for being the most accurate quarterback.
Evan Crower, Stanford - Listed as 6-foot-3, but looking more like 6-foot-5, Crower's a classic pocket passer. He didn't look fluid or comfortable in his foot movement, but he throws a nice ball and looks comfortable with his reads.
Philip Ely, undecided - Ely would fit best in a West Coast or spread offense. He has great timing and is extremely accurate on short passes. Solid mechanics.
Kiehl Frazier, Auburn - Frazier has so many tangibles, it's impossible not to admire what a great athlete he is. He can both run and pass, but what's most impressive is the way he uses his body in the throw. A powerful quarterback.
Everett Golson, UNC - This kid grows on you. He's small (6-foot-0 might be a stretch) and around 170 pounds, but he's fun to watch and will cause havoc with opposing ACC defenses. His accuracy on designed roll-outs was phenomenal.
DeMarcus Smith, Louisville - Smith displayed good mechanics, great delivery and consistent accuracy. Solid skills.
Kendal Thompson, Oklahoma - Looks very comfortable throwing on the run and a nice touch. He may want to work on his arm strength over the summer, though.
J.W. Walsh, Oklahoma State - Very versatile quarterback who showed no weaknesses. Has an excellent release -- blink and you miss the ball leaving his hand.
Final note: Miami's Jacory Harris and TCU's Andy Dalton were among six active NCAA quarterbacks who came out to help at the camp. Dalton threw hard, tight spirals. He also looked bigger and stronger than last year. Harris struggled with the accuracy target -- an upright metal-framed ring -- whiffing on three of four passes, but his confidence and gamesmanship were definitely present.