It might have taken a couple of months longer than first thought, but it’s still the result Oklahoma and its fans were hoping for.
Frisco (Texas) Emerson quarterback Mike Hawkins announced his commitment to the Sooners on Saturday afternoon on Instagram, asserting himself as one of the leaders of OU’s 2024 class.
Hawkins picked OU over TCU in the final battle, among several other offers. He was initially going to make his selection Jan. 31 before he decided to hit the pause button and wait things out.
It made sense as offensive coordinators were coming in and leaving like crazy at some of the top jobs in the country. One of the reasons TCU was a finalist is because Kendal Briles is now the offensive coordinator. Hawkins had developed a great relationship with Briles when Briles was at Arkansas.
But there’s always been something about the Sooners. It goes beyond the fact his father played for OU, but it definitely didn’t hurt the cause.
OU and offensive coordinator Jeff Lebby were certainly aware of Hawkins, ranked No. 144 in the Rivals 250, and the offer officially got the ball rolling last July. Any hesitation from either side was gone.
Hawkins and Lebby continued to build that bond throughout the fall, but then came the speculation of Lebby perhaps leaving Norman after one season.
Lebby, of course, didn’t do that, and the writing started to be on the wall that Hawkins would eventually be a Sooner as the dominoes all fell into place.
“I think guys understand that those conversations are those conversations,” said Lebby last month about the rumors. “Guys that we recruit understand that I love Oklahoma. It was very clear to them. Maybe a little drama out there, but not from me inside-out dealing with the guys I was dealing with every single day. Those guys understood how much I love being here every day.”
Hawkins was a star at Allen (Texas) High the last two seasons but will play his final season at Frisco Emerson.
He has combined to throw for 41 touchdowns with 10 interceptions in the last two seasons. In 2022, Hawkins completed 147 of 263 passes (56 percent) for 2,024 yards with 20 touchdowns and five picks. He also rushed for 409 yards and three scores.
It was vital for OU to lock up a top-tier quarterback because the Sooners saw what that meant last year with Jackson Arnold. Even during the inconsistent 6-7 season, Arnold was a calming presence as the face of the class and assuring everyone he was going nowhere.
Frisco (Texas) Rock Hill’s Kevin Sperry is set to be that same type of guy for the 2025 class. Sperry has already made multiple trips for OU’s spring practice since committing last month. Now expect Hawkins to be front and center the rest of the way in trying to attract the best of the best.
Hawkins becomes just the second commitment for OU’s 2024 class, joining four-star defensive back Jeremiah Newcombe.
The foundation is set, though. With the spring game coming up in two weeks and a bunch of recruits expected to be in town, now Hawkins can be a huge part of building this class to where OU and head coach Brent Venables want it to go.