Dan Ellis
Dan Ellis
Player Profile
Class:
Senior

Hometown:
Exton, Pa.

High School:
Downingtown H.S.

Height / Weight:
6-2 / 207

Position:
QB

WORTH NOTING: Finished his career fifth in school histo-ry with 3,974 yards passing and 28 touchdown passes … sixth in school history in total offense with 4,034 yards … one of only four quarterbacks in school history to throw for 300 yards in a game more than once (363 vs. Buffalo in ‘99, 333 vs. Duke in 2000) … started two bowl games (1999 Micronpc.com, 2000 O’ahu) and joins Shawn Moore and Mike Groh as the only UVa quarterbacks to start two bowl games … set a school record and tied the ACC record with six touchdown passes against Buffalo in the final home game of the 1999 season … interestingly, was just the first of two ACC quarterbacks to throw six touch-downs that day (Florida State’s Chris Weinke did it later in the afternoon against Maryland) … added four scoring tosses the next week against Maryland to become just the second player in ACC history to throw as many as 10 touchdown passes in a two-game span (Maryland’s Scott Milanovich did it in 1993) … finished eighth nationally in passing efficiency as a junior in 1999 in his first season as the starter … that is the highest finish by a Virginia quar-terback since Bobby Goodman finished eighth in 1992 … led the Cavaliers to dramatic last-minute road wins over North Carolina and Maryland in 1999 … one of seven true freshmen (along with Billy Baber, Ahmad Hawkins, Yubrenal Isabelle, Jermese Jones, Earl Sims and Antwoine Womack) to play for the Cavaliers in 1997 ... joins Don Majkowski (in 1983) as the only true freshmen to play quarterback at UVa under head coach George Welsh. HONORS: 2000—Received the Virginia Student Aid Foundation’s T. David Fitzgibbon Football Scholarship. 1999—All-ACC Academic Football Team.

CAREER HIGHLIGHTS:

2000—Second season as Virginia’s starting quarterback … very smart player, who plays within himself … has a good knowledge of the system … had a very trying season due to a hamstring injury that occurred just before halftime of the Maryland game in the season’s sixth week … was having a fine campaign up to that point and was on track to break the school’s single-season passing mark … start-ed eight of the nine games in which he played … also started against Georgia in the O’ahu Bowl, but was injured during the first series and did not return in the game … did not play against Florida State and N.C. State due to a recurring hamstring injury … played, but did not start, against Virginia Tech … finished fourth in the ACC and 33rd nationally in passing efficiency … completed 13 of 23 attempts for 217 yards and one touchdown in the opener against Brigham Young … made Richmond pay for gang-ing up to stop the run by throwing for 299 yards on 19 of 28 attempts the next week … also led the team with 37 yards rushing … his 336 yards of total offense vs. the Spiders is the 15th-highest single-game total in school his-tory … Duke employed the same run-stopping technique and he made them pay for it … completed 20 of 30 passes for a season-high 333 yards and three touchdowns … his 333 yards are eighth in school history … was held under 200 yards the next two weeks by Clemson and Wake Forest, but he had the offense clicking in the first half against Maryland … the Cavaliers built a 28-10 halftime lead, while rolling up 317 yards of offense (109 rushing, 208 passing) as he completed 10 of 15 passes … his only interception of the game proved to be devastating as Maryland returned it 69 yards for a touchdown and Ellis injured his hamstring trying to chase down the intercepting Terrapin … he didn’t return to the game in the second half and sat out against Florida State the next game … he started against North Carolina, but completed just seven of 14 throws for 100 yards and was sacked five times … had a tough performance in week 9 against Georgia Tech by completing 14 of 30 attempts for 136 yards and aggravat-ing his tender hamstring … held out against N.C. State in his last home game and saw limited action in the regular season finale against Virginia Tech … through halftime of the Maryland game he completed 95 of 162 attempts (58.6 percent) for 1406 yards and seven touchdowns, but was just 21 of 48 (43.8 percent) for 236 yards and no touch-downs the rest of the season … completed two of three passes for 26 yards in the O’ahu Bowl against Georgia before leaving during the first series with an injury … did not return to action following the injury … lettered.

1999—Stepped into the starter ’s role at quarterback and improved throughout the season … started all 11 games in which he played, including the Micronpc.com Bowl vs. Illinois … did not play against Georgia Tech due to a con-cussion suffered the previous week vs. Florida State … fin-ished eighth nationally (third in the ACC) in passing effi-ciency … his eighth-place standing nationally is the high-est for a Virginia quarterback since Bobby Goodman fin-ished eighth in 1992 … completed 60.5 percent of his passes, the third-highest percentage in school history … passed for 2050 yards, ninth on UVa’s single-season pass-ing list … 20 touchdown passes missed the school record by one … 156 completions tied for fifth in school history … was successful in the first start of his career in the opener against North Carolina in Chapel Hill, N.C. … didn’t have outstanding numbers (10 of 25 for 165 yards, one touch-down and three interceptions), but led the Cavaliers to a very important win on the road … directed the team into field goal position on UVa’s final drive that resulted in Todd Braverman’s game-winning 50-yard field goal with 27 sec-onds remaining … the three interceptions he threw vs. the Tar Heels ended up being the most he threw in a game all season … he only had one other game with more than one interception (2 vs. Duke) … threw for 233 yards, a career high at the time, and one touchdown at Clemson … completed 19 of 25 passes (76.0 percent) for 220 yards and one touchdown in a win over Wake Forest … was a torrid 14 of 18 (77.8 percent) for 190 yards and three touchdowns in a huge win over #17 Brigham Young in Provo, Utah … completed 61.5 percent (16 of 26) of his passes vs. Virginia Tech for 162 yards and one touchdown … did not throw an interception vs. a very opportunistic Hokie defense, but was sacked six times … spurred UVa to another big road win over N.C. State on Oct. 16 … com-pleted just 13 of 25 passes for 233 yards, but threw for three scores … had a rough outing against top-ranked Florida State, completing just seven of 14 passes for a season-low 44 yards … was knocked out of the game late in the first half and missed the next game against Georgia Tech … came back after the Tech game to lead UVa to a 50-point explosion vs. Buffalo … completed 16 of 19 pass-es for a career-high 363 yards and a school-record six touchdowns … completion percentage (84.2 percent) is tied for fifth in school history … completed 21 of 34 passes for 276 yards and four touchdowns a win over Maryland in the final regular season game … coolly led team to victory in what has become Virginia’s version of “The Drive” … Cavaliers took possession on their own 24-yard line with 1:12 on the clock and no timeouts remaining … he com-pleted passes of 9, 9, 10 and 15 yards to guide the Cavaliers down field and into Maryland territory … follow-ing a spike to stop the clock, he regrouped the offense … dropping back he lofted a pass toward 6-4 receiver Billy McMullen in the corner of the end zone … McMullen out-jumped his defender to pull down the perfectly thrown ball and get one foot barely in bounds to secure the win with 26 seconds to play … Ellis completed all five passes in the drive and executed the plan to perfection, working the sidelines, and spiking the ball to save as much time as possible … completed 15 of 32 passes for 146 yards and one touchdown vs. Illinois in the Micronpc.com Bowl ... let-tered for the first time.

1998—Backed up Aaron Brooks all season ... appeared in five regular season contests (Maryland, Duke, San Jose State, Florida State and North Carolina) and against Georgia in the Peach Bowl ... completed two of six passes for 30 yards and one interception during the regular sea-son … saw his most extensive action against San Jose State when he directed two fourth quarter drives … engi-neered an 11-play, 62-yard drive for UVa’s final touchdown of the game ... completed two of five passes for 30 yards in the game ... replaced Brooks briefly in the second quar-ter of the Peach Bowl ... threw two incomplete passes.

1997—Played in three games (Florida State, Maryland and N.C. State) as the backup quarterback to starter Aaron Brooks ... completed 17 of 33 passes for 252 yards ... threw one touchdown pass and was intercepted once ... also rushed for one touchdown ... his 252 yards passing ranked 10th in the nation among true freshmen ... turned in a memorable collegiate debut against Florida State ... replaced an injured Brooks late in the second quarter and played the rest of way ... showed great composure, com-pleting eight of 15 passes for 122 yards and one touch-down ... directed the Cavaliers on two of their three touch-down drives ... scored on a one-yard option play late in the third quarter … became just the sixth true freshman at UVa since 1972 to score in his first appearance ... later he hit fellow true freshman Ahmad Hawkins with a 15-yard scoring strike early in the fourth quarter ... led Virginia 75 yards in four plays on the second drive, completing passes of 13 and 47 yards to Germane Crowell, and 15 yards to Hawkins for the touchdown ... made his second appear-ance the following week at Maryland ... threw for 87 yards on four-of-seven passing against the Terrapins ... entered the contest midway through the third quarter with Virginia leading 38-0 ... guided the Cavaliers on their final touch-down drive and one other drive that stalled deep in Maryland territory ... completed five of 11 passes for 43 yards with one interception at N.C. State ... took over at quarterback with under nine minutes to play in the fourth quarter after Brooks left the game with an injured ankle.

HIGH SCHOOL: Three-year letterman at Downingtown High School for head coach John Barr ... started at quar-terback his junior and senior seasons ... three-year starter at outside linebacker ... completed 148 of 248 attempts for 2,568 yards and 30 touchdowns with only four intercep-tions as a senior ... also rushed for 671 yards and 22 touchdowns, leading his team to the state AAAA champi-onship in 1996 ... established school passing records for a single season and a career ... during his two seasons at quarterback, completed 257 of 434 passes for 4,489 yards and 48 TDs ... also rushed for over 1,000 yards (average of 5.5 yards per carry) and 33 TDs ... earned All-America recognition from Schutt Sports, Blue Chip, SuperPrep and the National Recruiting Advisor ... honorable mention All-American by USA Today ... Northeast Offensive Player of the Year by Super Prep ... received Maxwell Club’s Jim Henry award as the Pennsylvania High School Player of the Year ... first-team Associated Press All-State quarter-backback as a senior ... also named Pennsylvania Big School Player of the Year (for classes AAAA and AAA) by the AP following senior season ... first-team All-Chesmont League at quarterback as a junior and senior ... also named Chesmont League Player of the Year ... first-team Daily Local News quarterback as a junior and a senior ... Daily Local News Player of the Year ... Philadelphia Inquirer All-Area first-team quarterback as a junior and a senior ... Philadelphia Inquirer Player of the Year ... “Big 33” Pizza Hut Player of the Year ... Military Order of the Purple Heart “Offensive Player of the Year” ... named to the Reebok Elite 100 ... Pennsylvania Prep Top 44 ... as a linebacker, was three-time All-Chesmont League first-team selection ... Chesmont League “Linebacker of the Year” in 1996 ... twice named first-team All-Area linebacker by Daily Local News ... National High School Athletic Institute Academic All-American ... also lettered in basketball at Downingtown High School ... from same high school as college team-mate Arlen Harris.

PERSONAL: Daniel Gerard Ellis ... born 11-7-78 in Darby, Pa. ... son of Bernie and Kathleen Ellis ... member of the National Honor Society at Downingtown High School ... served as a volunteer for the Special Olympics ... his uncle, Mike Sherlock, played tailback under George Welsh at Navy from 1978-1981 ... has three sisters, Katie, Jackie, and Suzy, and two brothers, Jim and Matt ... engaged to marry Meghan Hughes ... enrolled in the Curry School of Education, pursuing his teaching degree … also majoring in history