Many were thinking that just being invited to California to compete as an Elite 11 finalist was reward enough, but Daniel Kaelin was shooting higher. And when the dust settled on the 2023 competition, Kaelin became the first Nebraska high school QB to be selected for the honor. (Zane Flores of Gretna made the finals last season but didn’t crack the Top 12 in the competition.)
In addition to being named an Elite 11 member, Kaelin also had success in the individual competitions among the 20 competitors in the field. On Friday, he took home the trophy in winning the accuracy competition.
He also finished 5th in the Elite 11 Pro Day Standings with 43 points, only 1 behind Dylan Railoa who tied for 3rd in that event. For the final standings, Elite 11 scorers award an MVP and then the next 11 in the standings round out those named as Elite 11 winners. (Yes, I know that’s 12 people, but what’re you gonna do?)
Alabama recruit Julian Sayin took home the MVP honors with Raiola garnishing the #1 ranking for the rest of the group. Here are the final standings. Please note how much Kaelin outperformed his recruiting services ranking which pegged him at 17th overall while he finished 10th the final 11 (11th including the MVP. Why do they make it so confusing??)
Observers were most taken by his accuracy, footwork and technique while putting his pure arm strength at the middle/bottom of the pack. Given the talent of that pack, this is far from an insult. And high school coach, Mike Huffman, has stated this has increased noticeably each season and should continue to do so.
His performance this weekend against this group should result in a bump up the charts of all four recruiting services and possibly some fourth stars.