Tennessee had two names of interest during this year’s Elite 11 quarterback competition, both of which ended up in the final ‘Elite 11’ rankings by the end of the week. Tennessee commit Harrison Bailey and Tennessee target Haynes King both were in the top cut of the 2019 rankings.
Three-star quarterback C.J. Stroud was named the MVP of the event held in Frisco, Texas.
While there wasn’t a ranking of the final eleven signal callers, Haynes King entered Wednesday as the top ranked quarterback on the week. Harrison Bailey entered the day sixth. Stroud did enough on Wednesday to take the MVP title from King.
Bailey has remained the face of Tennessee’s 2020 recruiting class since committing in late November. The four-star quarterback picked the Vols over Michigan, sticking with that decision through an offensive coordinator change. However, Bailey’s status has not stopped Tennessee from their pursuit of Haynes King, who is 247 Sports’ 32nd ranked player in the 2020 class.
King has narrowed it to four — Tennessee, Texas A&M, Duke and Auburn. He had initially planned to commit last week before the Elite 11, but chose to delay that decision as he continued to wrestle with his choices.
King offers a different feel than Bailey does. The 6-2, 185 pound passer was clocked at a 4.5 in the 40 yard dash, which matches his impressive tape at the high school level. But King isn’t lacking on the passing side either. He was praised for his success in the 7 on 7 portions of the event, catching the eye of 247 Sports’ Barton Simmons.
“For a kid that doesn’t come from a 7-on-7 background, we didn’t expect much out of him and he certainly exceeded all our expectations even given his ranking because of his consistency and his arm talent. He’s perhaps the most athletic quarterback in this class and yet he’s still a guy comfortable playing under center, sitting in the pocket and passing it. There’s not a box he hasn’t checked from a physical standpoint or from a profile standpoint.”
The timetable for King’s decision is now unclear, but it’s a fascinating wrinkle to the 2020 class for Tennessee.