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Penn State’s Present, Future Collide At Elite 11 Quarterback Competition

Trace McSorley has a front row seat to watch his likely successor, five-star Penn State commit Justin Fields, compete this week in Los Angeles at the Elite 11 Finals.

McSorley is among a select group of college quarterbacks serving as counselors at the annual invite-only showcase, which culminates Sunday with 12 prospects earning invites to Nike’s The Opening later this month. He’s joined by UCLA’s Josh Rosen, West Virginia’s Will Grier, and incoming Florida transfer Malik Zaire.

McSorley flew somewhat under the radar coming out of Briar Woods High School in Ashburn, Va., despite a dominant 50-7 record as a four-year starter, including three straight state championship victories. Fields is the second-highest ranked Penn State recruit of all time behind only Derrick Williams. Both are flat-out winners.

The Kennesaw, Ga., dual-threat is currently considered the nation’s No. 2 overall player for the 2018 cycle, according to 247Sports. He’s battling fellow five-star passer Trevor Lawrence in LA for the top spot heading into the heart of the summer. Standing 6-foot-3, 220 pounds with a 4.5 40-yard dash, Fields is a perfect fit for Joe Moorhead’s shotgun system — one that saw McSorley set the single-season Penn State record for total yardage in 2016 with 3,979.

Fields also has plenty of arm talent to go along with his size and speed. Here’s a clip of him dropping an absolute dime at the Cam Newton Memorial Day 7V7 Classic.

Like McSorley, Fields loves to throw the deep ball. The Under Armour All-American is also a five-tool shortstop for the Harrison Hoyas when he isn’t chasing greatness on the gridiron.

Fields led Harrison to a much-improved 10-2 record as a junior, compiling 3,230 total yards and 32 touchdowns in the talent-rich state of Georgia. He committed to the Nittany Lions right before last year’s Big Ten championship on Dec. 1 over 40 other offers from the who’s who of college football.

Fields won’t arrive on campus til 2018, where he’ll join a loaded quarterback room still featuring a redshirt senior McSorley, Tommy Stevens, Jake Zembiec, and Sean Clifford, provided no one leaves early for the NFL or transfers. Fields certainly looks like he could be the best of the bunch, and that’s saying quite a lot even considering his lofty ranking.

For this week, though, he has the chance to learn from McSorley a little early.

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About the Author

Ethan Kasales

Ethan’s a senior journalism major who grew up in Lemont, a few minutes from campus. When he’s not covering Penn State sports, you can usually find him golfing or teaching snowboarding at Tussey Mountain. Feel free to email him at [email protected]


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