247Sports ranks QBs at The Opening Finals
Is the No. 1 quarterback and top recruit status of Cartersville High School quarterback Trevor Lawrence being challenged?
Well if you ask around in Cartersville and Bartow County there is little question. Locals have witnessed the incredible performances of the Clemson commit for three years now as he has led the Hurricanes to a pair of state titles and a final four appearance with only one loss in three seasons.
Early Tuesday, Luke Stampini of 247Sports ranked the top performances from The Opening Finals featuring twelve of the nation’s top high school quarterback prospects following head-to-head competition at Nike World Headquarters in Beaverton, Oregon that wrapped up Monday.
The six-day event is arguably the most prestigious prep football showcase in the nation and included Cartersville rising senior quarterback Trevor Lawrence.
Lawrence has held the nation’s top overall prospect spot and the No. 1 quarterback spot among high school players since the Class of 2018 rankings were established, but much of the media hype at The Opening Finals this past weekend focused on nearby Harrison Hoyas QB Justin Fields from Kennesaw, GA.
Fields, who was committed to Penn State at one time but has since withdrawn that commitment, tossed 16 touchdowns in the 7on7 competition at The Opening Finals and did not throw an interception while connecting on 72 percent of his attempts. That type of performance against nationally elite competition earned him 247Sports top QB billing from the event.
Fields is a dual-threat quarterback whose stock has risen in recent months. Most experts now list Florida State, Florida, Georgia, Auburn, Alabama, and Penn State as his potential landing spots. He currently has 40 total offers according to 247Sports.
Fields won the Elite 11 MVP award and led his 7on7 team to The Opening 2017 championship, so last weekend’s performance in Beaverton will only fuel a growing debate about whether or not Lawrence will retain his No. 1 QB and prospect status. Fields also only threw from the pocket in the 7on7s in Oregon. His 4.51 speed was not utilized in this event as a runner.
Do not be misled by the hype, however. Lawrence performed well in Oregon and was highly impressive. He continued to receive rave reviews for his ability to read through his progressions and throw for accuracy. He threw for six touchdowns and a 65 percent completion rate, but he was picked off four times in the 7on7s.
In a different report Tuesday, Jeff Sentell of DawgNation took to the defense of Lawrence’s No. 1 position. He pointed out that Lawrence has handled the top spot with tremendous poise while winning back-to-back state titles and only dropping one game in his three-year high school career. Sentell further reminded his readers that those factors are key considerations in determining the overall No. 1 spot.
In the big picture, it really doesn’t matter. It is like the common comparison debates of other great athletes.
Lawrence is content in his selection of Clemson as his future home and Fields will land with one of the elite programs in the country. Who knows? We may even get to see them face-off on a collegiate Saturday somewhere down the road.
247Sports final quarterback rankings from the week of competition at The Opening Finals:
— Justin Fields — Kennesaw, GA — Harrison — 6-3, 220 — Undecided — 16 TD, 0 INT, 72% completion rate
— Justin Rogers — Bossier City, LA — Parkway — 6-4, 210 — TCU commit — 14 TD, 6 INT, 72%
— Tanner McKee — Corona, CA — Centennial — 6-6, 220 — Undecided — 10 TD, 0 INT, 70%
— Trevor Lawrence — Cartersville, GA — Cartersville — 6-6, 200 — Clemson commit — 6 TD, 4 INT, 65%
— Jarren Williams — Lawrenceville, GA — Central Gwinnett — 6-2, 205 — Kentucky commit — 6 TD, 3 INT, 68%
— Dorian Thompson-Robinson — Las Vegas, NV — Bishop Gorman — 6-2, 195 — UCLA commit — 6 INT
— Tyler Shough — Chandler, AZ — Hamilton — 6-4, 190 — North Carolina commit — 6 TD, 4 INT, 63%
— Matt Corral — Long Beach, CA — LB Poly — Undecided — 7 TD, 3 INT, 57%
— Devin Leary — Sicklerville, NJ — Timber Creek — 6-1, 190 — NC State commit — 4 TD, 4 INT, 68%
— Cammon Cooper — Lehi, UT — Lehi — Washington State commit — 1 TD, 3 INT, 65%
247Sports -- Luke Stampini -- http://247sports.com/Gallery/Final-Ranking-of-the-Elite-11-Quarterbacks-53433350
DawgNation -- Jeff Sentell -- https://www.dawgnation.com/football/recruiting/the-5-things-i-learned-on-the-last-day-of-the-2017-opening-finals