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Colleyville (Texas) Heritage quarterback Cody Thomas has a message for the other 24 quarterbacks competing in the Elite 11 QB finals this week: "I'm ready."
Thomas, an Oklahoma commit, couldn't say the same thing when he competed at the Elite 11 regional camp at Cowboys Stadium in March. Not only was Thomas in the middle of baseball season, but he actually came straight from a baseball game to the event.
The results weren't great, at least not to Thomas' standards. He was concerned that his performance might have left a bad impression.
"I knew they wouldn't just look at the camp performance. I felt with my film and other stuff being factored in, I would get that shot," Thomas said. "I talked to coach Trent Dilfer about everything and assured him I would be on point and on the ball with everything if I was chosen."
Thomas, who is 6-foot-5 and 220 pounds, is ranked No. 93 in the ESPN 150 and earned his invite to the finals last month.
The Elite 11 finals begin Wednesday and run through Sunday in Redondo Beach, Calif, and despite Thomas' hectic summer schedule between baseball and football, there is no place he would rather be.
"I'm very pumped about this opportunity," Thomas said. "This is a big deal for me. I've watched all of the Elite 11s in the past. It was always a goal of mine that when it came to my senior season, I get that chance, too."
He is accustomed to busy summers, but he admits this summer might have been his busiest ever. Thomas said he has had three days this summer where he wasn't either training for football or playing baseball.
Thomas, a prospect as an outfielder, has participated in multiple summer baseball tournaments and that won't end after the Elite 11. He said he still has a couple more tournaments in August.
But that doesn't mean Thomas won't be sharp this week.
"Ever since I got the call, I've been studying the playbook. My ball is coming out good. I wanted my chance to compete and now I've got it," Thomas said. "I'm looking forward to learning from Coach Dilfer because you know he knows what he's talking about. He has been where we all want to be."
Three quarterbacks on OU's roster were invited to the Elite 11 finals with Landry Jones (2007), Blake Bell (2009) and Kendal Thompson (2010) all earning the honor.
The Elite 11 finals will be shown in two parts on ESPN with "Elite 11 QB Camp: The Finals" airing Tuesday, Aug. 7, and Tuesday, Aug. 14.
The competition hasn't always been kind to OU, though. Quarterbacks Tommy Grady (2002), Rhett Bomar (2003) and Keith Nichol (2006) all participated in the finals, too, and didn't end their career with the Sooners.
Quarterback Archie Bradley (2010) will likely never play a snap for the Sooners but there are no hard feelings there. Bradley, a right-handed pitcher, signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks after being a first-round selection (No. 7 overall) in the 2011 MLB Draft.