It would have been pretty hard for someone to have matched Dr. Phillips quarterback Nick Patti on Saturday at the EA Sports Elite 11 Quarterback Camp in Las Vegas.
Part of the camp features an accuracy challenge in which participants get eight throws to make it through eight "hoop" targets placed across the field. The goal is for each player to throw the ball through the hoops. To the layman standing there watching, it looks easy.
Patti has participated in Elite 11 camps for the past three years. He's never hit all eight targets. Until Saturday, that is. Patti was in a zone
"In the preliminary round to get into the finals I hit 6 of 8 targets," Patti said. "Then in the final I didn't miss."
And by going 8-for-8 in the championship round, there were no other challengers and Patti walked away with the Elite 11 Golden Gun award.
A remarkable feat for any quarterback, and Patti finally did it. He's been working on this particular drills for quite some time.
"It's definitely tougher than it looks," Patti said. "I practice that kind of stuff just to get ready for it. When I go out with Tom Shaw we work on that kind of stuff ... I haven't hit them all in any round yet, but two years ago I made it to the finals and won it then too."
And so there was at least one happy face boarding a plane from Las Vegas on Saturday afternoon.
"I'm pretty excited about it. It was cool and it was a lot of fun," Patti said. "It was definitely a good trip to get all the way to Vegas and be able to do well. It's also a good introduction heading into
in a few weeks."
Patti and the rest of his Dr. Phillips teammates are entered in the Nike 7-on national tournament in Portland, Ore., which is the weekend of July 17.
Patti is just a junior, so the recruiting process has not hit him full force yet, but he has had conversations with coaches at UCLA, Oregon, North Carolina, Florida State, Georgia Tech and Clemson.
"It's all starting to sink in," Patti said of his exposure. "I think being out with there working with Tom Shaw and seeing all the major athletes I see on daily basis, it makes you grow up quick.