Want to attack every day with the latest Georgia football recruiting info? That’s the Intel. This rep offers up a preview of the Elite 11 QB competition that will take place across the next three days out in California.


REDONDO BEACH, Calif. -- The flight out to Los Angeles this morning does leave one wondering.

Wondering if somehow this current juxtaposition of past, present and future is even more than what Kirby Smart could have dreamed up when he took the Georgia job leading his alma mater.

This fall will be Smart’s eighth season leading the ‘Dawgs. Did his wildest dreams have the roadmap for the ‘Dawgs ticking off all the following before the 2024 season:

  • Two national championships in three national title appearances
  • A Heisman finalist at QB
  • A facilities overhaul of more than $200 million to change the entire footprint of the Georgia football team on the UGA campus
  • A No. 1 overall draft pick that was recruited to UGA from the state of Georgia
  • A record five NFL first-round-draft picks in one draft off his defense
  • An NFL-record 15 selections from one team in the same NFL Draft
  • The trinity of being the reigning national champion and holding the No. 1 recruiting classes for the current cycle (2024) and the next cycle (2025) at the same time
  • Watching his QB tie Joe Burrow’s record for the most touchdown responsibility (six) in the national championship game
  • Seeing two Georgia QB commits competing in the Elite 11

That last one is the reason DawgNation is flying to California today. For the first time since 2008, the ‘Dawgs have not one, but two QB commitments competing in the same Elite 11 finals.

That kind of kills another narrative here. That the ‘Dawgs are a run-first or a defensive-minded football juggernaut. That’s the elite QBs will go elsewhere where they can put “the ball in the air” with much greatest frequency.

Yeah. Scratch all of that.

Georgia now has all the defensive firepower any team could ever want. They’ve got the national titles box checked and the NFL development pipeline aced. The team is built to win from the trenches out and now they also have those elite QBs commits and on the way to Athens.

The program used to have the QB and the RB and a piece here and there. The ‘Dawgs did not have the complete package on both sides of the ball that they have now.

5-star QB Dylan Raiola hangs out during his photoshoot back in March on his unofficial visit to UGA. (Courtesy photo) (Instagram/Dawgnation)

5-star Georgia QB commitment Dylan Raiola is one of the favorites to win the event. The 6-foot-3, 220-pounder is rated as the nation’s No. 1 QB prospect for 2024 across all the recruiting services.

Ryan Puglisi, another 4-star Georgia QB commit, is also in town to compete. The rankings on the well-respected Puglisi continue to climb as he’s now seen as the nation’s No. 7 overall QB prospect for this cycle for On3. He’s rated as the nation’s No. 12 QB for this cycle for 247Sports.

“It is a dream come true to be in this thing,” Puglisi said this week. “But now that I’ve got it, I want to go win it. I am going to go in there and control what I can control and try to win it.”

The annual quarterback derby pits the nation’s top 20 quarterbacks against one another in a series of drills over three days to determine the top QB in the Class of 2024.

It is an annual tradition complete with classroom study, drill work, Pro Day simulations and 7-on-7 work where they will be joined by some of the top prospects in the classes of 2024, 2025 and 2026. If one wanted to find the latest incarnation of the Opening finals that used to take place years again at Nike headquarters in Oregon and then later at The Star in Dallas, then this is it.

Ryan Puglisi can throw a football 73 yards and a baseball at 93 miles per hour. The big-time arm in the 2024 class "loves" Georgia. (Jeff Sentell / DawgNation) (Jeff Sentell/Dawgnation)

The honored invitees will be scored on their results across the three days of instruction and competition and from that an Elite 11 MVP will be named. There will also be a ranking of the nation’s Elite 11 QBs at the event plus the overall MVP.

That will form up this year’s Elite 11. It is an annual tradition that Georgia QB commit Aaron Murray and future QB commit Justin FIelds won in the past. Murray was a part of the Bulldog duo back in 2008. That was when he joined Georgia native Zach Mettenberger out at the Elite 11 representing UGA.

The ‘Dawgs actually had three QBs out at that event in 2008. Former 5-star and future No. 1 overall pick Matthew Stafford was actually a college counselor at the Elite 11. Check out the photo below. There’s Stafford in the back row in the grey jersey and a beaming Murray is sitting in the front row.

Mettenberger is on the far left in the back row. He later transferred from UGA and went on to star at LSU.

Murray won the Elite 11 that year. Beating out the likes of future Alabama national championship QB AJ McCarron and current NFL starter Geno Smith.

Check out the 2008 alumni photo from the Elite 11 finals from 15 years ago. That's the last time that Georgia had two QB commitments (Zach Mettenbeger, Aaron Murray) invited to compete in the same Elite 11. (Elite11) (Elite 11/Dawgnation)

McCarron led the Tide to two national titles during his time at Alabama. Murray went on to rewrite the SEC and UGA record books during his time in Athens, but he never got the ‘Dawgs to the national championships.

That’s a big difference in the program over the last 15 years. An Elite 11 QB doesn’t have to come in and lead the ‘Dawgs to the promised land. The ‘Dawgs are already there and have pulled up a lawn chair and have a couple of Tomahawk steaks smoking on the grill.

They are not going anywhere and talents like Puglisi and Raiola are on their way to maintain and elevate the program. Not end a long-suffering championship drought.

Those two are coming in to make sure the ‘Dawgs keep hoisting those national championship trophies over the next four to five years.

A lot has changed on that front, but we must also point out the Mike Bobo recruited and was set to coach Mettenberger and Murray in Athens. That’s the same thing he now gets to do with Puglisi and Raiola.

Kind of crazy, huh? Time is now a flat circle when it comes to Bobo calling the plays and recruiting elite QBs in Athens.

Puglisi and Raiola aren’t the only ‘Dawgs at the Elite 11 fhis week

The first day of Elite 11 is set to begin at approximately 9 PM EST tonight. That will be 6 PM local time out in California.

Puglisi and Raiola will not be the only Georgia football commitments and targets out at the even this week. The Elite-11 has introduced an All-22 camp format to support the top-rated QBs in their on-field and drill work this week.

They need running backs, tight ends and receivers to throw to this week. That means the event also needs elite cornerbacks, linebackers and safeties to defend those golden Elite 11 arms.

Check out the list of Georgia commits and targets that were announced to be at the Elite 11 this week:

  • Unrated 2026 LB Tyler Atkinson
  • 4-star 2025 TE Ethan Barbour
  • 4-star RB Chauncey Bowens (UGA commit)
  • 4-star 2024 LB Chris Cole
  • Unrated 2026 TE Kendre’ Harrison
  • 4-star 2024 S DeMello Jones (UGA commit)
  • 5-star 2024 QB Dylan Raiola (UGA commit)
  • 4-star 2024 QB Ryan Puglisi (UGA commit)
  • 5-star 2024 WR Jeremiah Smith (Ohio State commit)
  • 4-star 2024 WR Nitro “Showtime” Tuggle (UGA commit)

If that’s not enough action, there is also the national finals of the OT7 tournament that takes place approximately 45 miles away from the Elite 11 events this week.

There will be some repetition from some of the UGA guys and targets at both events this week.

That event, which will run through Sunday evening will feature the following UGA commitments and targets listed below:

  • 4-star 2024 WR Ny Carr (UGA commit)
  • 4-star 2025 S Jontae Gilbert (Ohio State commit)
  • 4-star 2024 TE Colton Heinrich (UGA commit)
  • 4-star 2025 RB Alvin Henderson
  • 5-star 2024 5-star CB Charles Lester
  • 4-star 2024 S DeMello Jones (UGA commit)
  • 4-star 2025 QB Deuce Knight
  • 5-star 2025 LB Jadon Perlotte (UGA commit)
  • 5-star 2024 CB Ellis Robinson IV (UGA commit)
  • 5-star 2024 WR Jeremiah Smith (Ohio State commit)
  • 4-star 2024 WR Nitro “Showtime” Tuggle (UGA commit)
  • 5-star 2025 WR Ryan Williams (Alabama commit)


(check on the recent reads on Georgia football recruiting)