Trent Dilfer Loves Syracuse Commit Zach Allen, Adds Him to Elite 11 Finals

The Texas quarterback is starting to build some national love for his competitive spirit.

Being only the 2nd Texan in six years to commit to Syracuse, Zach Allen knew he would raise a lot of eyebrows in amazement for Orange fans. The Temple, TX native set the bar even higher, receiving an invite last night to the Elite 11 Finals in July.

Allen was a standout at the Dallas regional in Cowboy Stadium, which speaks to his 22nd overall selection by Trent Dilfer, former Super Bowl champion and HC of the Finals squad. From a field of over 70 QBs, the Cowboys’ Tony Romo saw enough to say that Allen was his favorite player from the regional. Allen joins a pool of 25 QBs, and the young stud got some props from Dilfer:

“He is a young Colt McCoy with an even better arm. He’s a dynamic athlete. Plays the position the way I look for it to be played: sudden. That’s quick and fast, a mind, body, and arm. Everything he does has urgency. He’s a playmaker. He’s a passer that can also beat you with his legs. Syracuse is very, very lucky to have Zach Allen come to their school.”

ESPN ranks Allen as the 48th ranked pocket passer out of all the 2013 recruits, and you could make a case Allen is the least sought after from the Elite 11 group. But Dilfer clearly saw something in Allen that made him a finalist. He also noted that the selections were not just based on stars or the most offers:

“We were finding the 24 best competitors: the guys with that fierce competitive spirit that also had the physical and mental make-up to be successful. This was a very, very talented class in itself, very deep.”

Dilfer could easily be talking about himself. Never a guy with a rocket arm, Dilfer used a competitive drive and guts to help the Ravens with the ’00 Super Bowl. Allen told The Fizz already that he hates losing, and that spirit is something SU needs in its program. Allen has already shared his eagerness to compete with signal-caller Austin Wilson for depth chart positioning.

Dilfer also added that Allen is a great athlete and a playmaker. It can never be stressed enough how Doug Marrone wants a paradigm shift in offensive schemes, from a predictable offense, to a more dynamic one. Allen hasn’t got the attention of being a “dual-threat” presence, like some of SU’s other candidates aboard the carousel. But he plays with a sense of urgency every down, doesn’t blink under the spotlight, lets his instincts take over, and as Dilfer puts it, he is “sudden.”

The two stars for Allen is a huge understatement. Dilfer didn’t want the 25 highest ranked QBs in the country, but to also have some underdogs who want it badly enough and will use that drive in the competition. Allen is highly-motivated, and it says a lot that he was mentioned in this very talented class.

SU fans should be thrilled the Orange has an incoming QB who is getting some national love and is looking forward to the challenge. Mid-July should be awfully interesting for Syracuse. E.O.’s rendition of “The Decision” should take  place on the 20th, while Allen looks to impresses us even more once again from the 18th to the 22nd.

Posted: Brendan Glasheen

16 Comments on this Post

  1. The more I’m reading about this kid, the more I’m loving him. Keep the hunger inside you strong Zach! Cannot wait to see what he does in Orange next year.

  2. Norma Stitz

    And yet some on here still think he will be used as an athlete and not a QB. Not a chance, his recruiting is going to blow up with this Elite 11 selection. CUSE will get pushed hard for him. Hope they can hold on.

  3. Let’s take a look at the numbers in this article.
    ESPN has Zach Allen ranked the 48th best pocket passer in the class of 2013. With 2000/3000 kids playing quarterback in high school next year getting ranked 48th isn’t to bad,is it?
    The other number that stood out for me was that Trent Dilfer only took 25 of the best for the Elite 11 competition and one of them was Zach Allen. Is Mr. Dilfer telling us that Zach is better than 50% of the top 48 quarterbacks in the nation?
    Zach has one more year to play high school football,let’s all hope that he stays healthy and shows up at Syracuse in July 2013 to start classes.

    GO Cuse.

  4. Russell MacEachern

    Hey Norma,its starting to look like u were right about Allen …now we have to hope his word holds up to his talent…I think he stays loyal…yeah Ron he seems to have been grossly underrated…he’s not anymore..!!

  5. Not in this story, but also worth mentioning. Ashanti Woulard is also in that Elite 11 and Syracuse was in his final three. We’re in the mix for some recruits this year that we wouldn’t even make the list for last year.

    Recruiting is picking up and, whadya know… Marrone is identifying talent before anyone even knows how good they are. Zach Allen is going to see a bump or two in his star rating by signing day.

    I think he has a good head on his shoulders and is a man of his word, so I think he stays Orange.

  6. Better yet, it sounds like he’ll be here in January to get a leg up on classes and take part in Spring practice. He’ll have a shot to start as a true freshman.

  7. @Derek;I wish that Ashanti Woulard would have listened to his linebacker friend and come to Syracuse. The competition between the three quarterbacks for the starting job would have been fierce and fun to watch.
    But by the looks of things,I think with the three qb’s already on campus,I believe the future is bright for syracuse.

    With great articles like the one above given to us on a daily basis,I woukld like to ask who’s the one “out of touch” with recruiting?

    Great areticle Fizz,great article.

    GO CUSE;

  8. Thanks for the read guys. Yeah Dilfer obviously sees some potential here. And Allen seems like a loyal guy. Most importantly, he competitiveness is perfect for this scenario: a chance to revamp a football program that is on the move to a new conference looking to make a statement. Given that Allen loves challenges, he should no doubt continue to impress us.


    You love this guy based on the description and the ratings listen to the podcast of his interview with Brent Axe Sounds like this guy has a Tebow type heart. It will make you smile that he’s an OrangeMan! HE WANTS TO WIN!

    We’re all glad to have you Zach Keep up the good work.

  10. Norma Stitz

    I think he stays loyal as well, and I pray he does!!!!! To me I would rather have Allen than Kelly from last year. Easy to say a year later after SU lost out on Kelly but I prefer what I have seen, read, heard of Allen’s demeanor and makeup over Kelly’s. Just my preference, not a put down. I truly believe this kid is gonna be special at the college level and I really can’t wait to see him help restore the glory of the ORANGE!!!

  11. Dr Bill

    I love the fact that the kid has Texas blood lines……this is Texas we are talking about….not upstate NY…not Connecticut…or Massachusetts….TEXAS…….If you understand HS football, then you know what that means. at this point in our program, Marrone has to identify talent early and offer…we are not at the point yet to land a 4 to 5 star player…after everyone else is in on him!!!

    We need to start winning some games….Our presence in the ACC alone, will help improve our recruiting because players will want to compete in the ACC …as opposed to the Big East…….Things are looking up for the ORANGE……Go Cuse…plus…I live in NC now……so I will get to see the Cuse on the regular……Go Cuse!!!!

  12. I’m with you guys. I love the competitive spirit Allen is showing. He’s got the “it” factor seemingly, and right now it looks like he’s getting respect around the country. Good for him.

  13. I guess ESPN showed the Elite 11 competition early Sjunday morning and I missed it. From what everyone is telling me,that the ESPN pundits considered Zach Allen to be the best quarterback in the group.

    I’m really glad that the coaching staff at Syracuse doesn’t know anything about recruiting. All they get is these 2 & 3 star athletes that can’t or don’t know how to play the game of football.

    Let’s all hope that Zach Allen is a man who keeps his word and keeps his committment to the class of 2013 at Syracuse University.

    Keep up the good work Coach Marrone,2013 is looking to be the best class that we’ve had in over the last 20 some years.


  14. SUDoody

    Another 2-star recruit and SU fans are popping the champagne corks. Hilarious. They can’t even crawl out of the Big East basement with these kinds of recruits. Imagine how ugly its going to be in the ACC.

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