Elite 11 QBs Dante Moore, JJ Kohl, Ryan Montgomery showcase their skills

MASILLION — Dante Moore was in a familiar place on Saturday.

Detroit quarterback Martin Luther King Jr. was one of more than 50 quarterbacks participating in the Elite 11 Ohio Regional inside the Paul L. David Athletic Training Center in Massillon. A year earlier, the consensus five-star rookie had done the same.

However, the Dante Moore who left the Elite 11 on Saturday was not the same player who left a year earlier. Not even close, in some ways.

“A big difference for sure, I will say, was just my body at first,” said the No. “Actually two years ago and last year I wasn’t really as tall as I am today. I was 210 (pounds) today so me being here and seeing the changes in the The way I sank the whole offseason, The way I trained was probably the most important thing from last year, I’m grateful for the invite and there’s still work to be done.

Moore was the headliner for Saturday’s event, the biggest name among quarterbacks invited to one of nine regionals held across the country between March and June. He holds offers from dozens of major programs, like Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Miami (Florida), and Penn State continuing his services.

Massillon's Jalen Slaughter competes in the 2022 Elite 11 Regional Tour quarterback event at Massillon High School's Paul L. David Athletic Training Center.  Saturday April 09, 2022.

Long before Moore was the undisputed No. 1 player among the 46 future senior quarterbacks on the field at Massillon, he was a freshman who would soon be a sophomore. In other words, he looked like Jalen Slaughter from Massillon, who was one of six invited freshmen.

For Slaughter, it marked something totally different from what it did for Moore. It was a start of sorts.

“This year I’m doing a lot more camps and getting involved in more football than I did last year,” said Slaughter, who was one of three quarterbacks in the Stark County area — with the Alliance sophomore Brendan Zurbrugg and West Branch junior Dru DeShields — guest at regional. “Last year I was doing basketball and stuff. I’m really doing a lot of camps this year and a lot of tours now.”

Alliance's Brendan Zurbrugg competes in the 2022 Elite 11 Regional Tour quarterback event at Massillon High School's Paul L. David Athletic Training Center.  Saturday April 09, 2022.

Class of 2025 QBs Ryan Montgomery and Colin Hurley are already receiving Power Five offers

Freshman year isn’t too early to do all that, especially for a highly regarded quarterback. Among the other five entrants in the Class of 2025 were Ryan Montgomery of Findlay and Colin Hurley of Jacksonville, Florida.

Montgomery, whose older brother Luke is an Ohio State Class of 2023 draftee, has already generated offers from the Buckeyes, as well as Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, from Penn State and Tennessee. Hurley, who led Trinity Christian to the Florida Class 2A state title last fall, has already garnered substantial interest from ACC and SEC schools.

Two years from now, either could hold the same headlining title that Moore carries with him these days. The one title that matters a lot, however, is the one won on the pitch.

Colin Hurley of Jacksonville, Fla. Trinity Christian competes in the 2022 Elite 11 Regional Tour quarterback event at Massillon High School's Paul L. David Athletic Training Center.  Saturday April 09, 2022.

Titles like the one Hurley won in the fall. A title that Hurley does not rest on at all, which is why he was over 800 miles from home on a snowy and cold April day.

“I compete against myself every day to get better every day,” Hurley said. “Those are the types of environments I want to be in. I want to be around a lot of good quarterbacks. It’s only going to make me better at the end of the day.”

That’s why many of the quarterbacks participating in Saturday’s event were going to be back on the camp circuit the next day. Hoban junior Jayvian Crable, for example, will take part in a showcase in the greater Cleveland area on Sunday.

Iowa Ankeny High School quarterback JJ Kohl competes in the 2022 Elite 11 Regional Tour quarterback event at Massillon High School's Paul L. David Athletic Training Center.  Saturday April 09, 2022.

JJ Kohl becomes well known beyond Iowa

Ankeny, Iowa, junior JJ Kohl was going straight from Stark County to Kansas City, Mo., to attend Sunday’s ESPN/Under Armor Elite Underclassmen camp. For Kohl, being part of the Elite 11 or the ESPN/Under Armour camp shows what has been gained in just one year.

“Last year, at this point, on this specific day, not many people knew who I was,” said Kohl, who went from a 2021 Under Armor camp in Columbus to a 2023 class goal for the coach. -Iowa State leader Matt Campbell. “I had no stars, no offers, none of that. Not many people knew JJ Kohl’s name. … I’m very lucky to be able to attend these events and I’m grateful to my parents for giving me these opportunities. . I love the competition.”

Findlay's Ryan Montgomery competes in the 2022 Elite 11 Regional Tour quarterback event at Massillon High School's Paul L. David Athletic Training Center.  Saturday April 09, 2022.

Even if this competition is not always football. Montgomery was leaving Massillon for a spring spent mostly on the AAU basketball circuit, as well as in his own school’s weight room.

Regardless of how this competition is found, it remains a busy time.

“I’ll be a lot busier because I’m playing AAU basketball,” Montgomery said. “I’m currently heading to Grand Rapids for a few games on Sunday with my teams. For our family, it’s next time as they say.”

Contact Chris at [email protected]

On Twitter: @ceasterlingINDIA

Comments are closed.