The Elite 11 Camp in Dallas this past weekend attracted some of the top quarterbacks from across the country. One of those showing off his arm was Terre Haute (Ind.) South's Danny Etling, who was attracted to the event's venue.
"It was in Cowboys Stadium, and it's not too often you get to throw in there," Etling said. "I really loved going out there and seeing who else is elite in the country, and it was good to see how I stacked up in comparison to them."
Eventually Etling felt he put his best foot forward, but the event did not start out the way he was expecting.
"The first day I didn't do as good as I thought I would and was kind of disappointed with my performance," Etling said. "The second day I really stepped up to the competition, I thought, and really performed well. So, the second day went better and I really showed what I can do."
The 6-3, 210-pound Etling went into the Elite 11 already boasting offers from Purdue and Colorado. The in-state school was first on the scene with a scholarship offer and Etling has close family ties to the program.
"I went to Purdue's junior day and they offered me, so I was really ecstatic about that," Etling said. "I watched them a ton because my cousin [Joe Holland] played football there and was a linebacker for them for four years."
Holland just finished his career at Purdue, earning all-Big Ten honorable mention honors in 2011, and is excited to know his cousin has an opportunity to continue the legacy at Purdue, according to Etling.
"He was pumped up for me," Etling said. "He said he was going to let me make my own decision, but was telling me all the good things Purdue had to offer. I think my whole family would love it if I went to Purdue."
The offer from Colorado followed shortly after Purdue's, but was not unexpected. The Buffaloes were actually the first team to show serious interest in Etling, and the Indiana junior reciprocated that interest with a recent visit to Boulder.
"I actually went to out visit Colorado a couple weeks ago," Etling said. "People had told me it was beautiful, but it was absolutely beautiful. There is no comparison with the mountains right in the backdrop of the practice field and the weather was beautiful. It was a great experience to go out there and they have a lot to offer.
"Their coaching staff is all NFL guys, so they know what they are talking about an know how to get you there. They are building a $250 million complex that is great. They are definitely a program that is going to be on the rise and in the next couple years they are going to have a lot of success I think."
Other schools that are showing interest include Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Cincinnati, Penn State, Vanderbilt, Tennessee and Bowling Gree and Etling is interested in exploring those possibilities as well.
"Iowa wants me to come down there and visit practice and Indiana wants me to come down," Etling said. "I have already gone down to Cincinnati before to check out their whole complex."
Etling has not finalized any additional visit plans at this time, and he does not expect to take his recruitment out too far into the future.
"I might head up to Indiana or Iowa for a spring practice just to look at them and see how they compare to Purdue and Colorado, and make sure I am sure of my decision when I make it," Etling said.
"I think I want to get this done and out of the way soon. It's a tough process, a lot of work and a lot of traveling."
Etling finished his junior season with 1,537 passing yards and nine touchdowns for a 3-7 South Vigo team.