Recent Hendon Hooker Notes
Here's who is joining Tennessee football coach Josh Heupel at the 2023 SEC Media Days
Sapakoff: Ranking ACC, SEC football coaches 1-28; a Kirby Smart move
Sapakoff: Ranking ACC, SEC football coaches 1-28; a Kirby Smart move
Sapakoff: Ranking ACC, SEC football coaches 1-28; a Kirby Smart move
Sapakoff: Ranking ACC, SEC football coaches 1-28; a Kirby Smart move
Summary: Hendon Hooker is a talented QB who has the arm, legs, and deep accuracy to succeed as an NFL passer, but he is already 25 years old and is coming off a torn ACL. On November 19th, 2022, Hooker was about to play South Carolina in a crucial SEC East Clash. To that point, Hooker had a phenomenal season throwing for 3,135 yards and 27 TDs against two interceptions. He had led the Vols to nine wins, including a monumental victory over Alabama. A future trip to New York for the Heisman ceremony seemed inevitable. Then in the fourth quarter against the Gamecocks, Hooker tore his ACL. Hooker is on track to return by training camp, when he could compete for a starting job, depending on which team grabs him. If Hooker were two years younger and didn't tear his ACL discussion on him would be much different. He would easily be a first-round pick. His physical traits are that of an NFL starter. He benefited from an offensive system and receivers that simplified his job at Tennessee. His best-case scenario is to find a similar offense in the NFL that allows him to distribute the ball. He seems to read the field well and make good decisions, as evidenced by a TD:Int ratio of 58-5 over last two seasons.
College: Hooker began his career at Virginia Tech in 2017 as a 3-star recruit. He had offers from other schools like Clemson and North Carolina State. After redshirting his first season, he did not receive much playing time his second year, finishin fourth on the depth chart. He put his name in the transfer portal but returned to Blacksburg to finish his degree. That paid off as Hooker won the starting job by the fifth game. He felt stifled by a West Virginia offense that had predetermined targets. In 2020, he had a bout with COVID and missed the first two games. He was on the bench for the season finale against Clemson.
After Graduating, Hooker played two years at Tennessee. Hooker started the year as a backup behind Joe Milton but took over in Week 2 and went on a tear. Hooker felt very comfortable in coach Josh Huepel’s spread vertical offense. In 2021, he posted nearly 3,000 passing yards and 31 TDs, throwing only three picks. Some thought that he would declare for the draft but he played his one more year of eligibility.
Strengths: Hooker has all the physical tools needed to be an NFL starter. He has an NFL-ready body at 6-3, 217. He has a strong arm that can push the ball over 55 yards with good velocity. He pairs that with very good placement on deep passes to become a dangerous downfield threat. Hooker is a great athlete who routinely uses his legs to pick up first downs. Before his knee injury, he was expected to run the 40 in the 4.6-second range. Hooker proved to be very safe with the ball throughout his tenure with the Volunteers, throwing only five interceptions in two seasons. That he's consistently able to push the ball downfield while avoiding picks is a rare combination. He has good intermediate accuracy as well. Very good at leading receivers on slants, posts, and crossing routes.
Weaknesses: Beyond his injury and age, biggest concern with Hooker is how well will he adapt to an NFL-style offense. The Volunteers did an excellent job of scheming receivers open allowing Hooker easier throws downfield. Too often Hooker would scramble after his first read as opposed to going through progressions. Once he breaks the pocket, his eyes drop and he usually tries to get yards on the ground rather than look downfield to make a throw. These two habits are going to be harder to get away with at the next level. Accuracy-wise Hooker could improve his placement on short hitches and passes toward the sidelines. A lot of his short passes tend to sail high, leaving receivers vulnerable to taking hits.
FRANKLY: Despite all the talk of others, we predict Hooker can be the steal of this draft at quarterback, even if a team climbs into the top 5. A team with a viable 2023 QB already aboard can take Hooker, with the plan that he will be ready to succeed in 2024. His ACL will heal this midseason—and so what if he will be 25? I have more concerns about Young's size, Stroud's effectiveness without great receivers, Levis' inconsistency and Richardson's overall QB instincts. Hooker is a franchise-type, face-of-the team solid citizen and the real deal on the field. Great arm talent, good runner but needs more discretion there. Proven with 58:5 TD ration last two seasons and he blew up Alabama. Take him regardless of how high the pick.
YEAR (GP/GS) CP-ATT CP% YDS TD INT CAR YDS AVG TD
2018: (6/0) 0-0 0 0 0 0 4 57 14.3 1
2019: (11/8) 99-162 61.1 1,555 13 2 123 356 2.9 5
2020: (8/7) 98-150 65.3 1,339 9 5 120 620 5.2 9
2021: (13/11) 206-302 68.2 2,945 31 3 167 620 3.7 5
2022: (11/11) 229-329 69.6 3,135 27 2 104 430 4.1 5
Total: (49/37) 632-943 67.0 8,974 80 12 518 2,083 4.0 25
2023 NFL Combine Invitee
2023 Senior Bowl Invitee
2022 SEC Offensive Player of the Year (Associated Press, Coaches, USA TODAY)
2022 All-America Second Team (CBSSports.com/247Sports)
2022 All-America Third Team (Associated Press)
2022 All-SEC First Team (Associated Press, Coaches, USA TODAY)
2022 Maxwell Award Finalist
2022 Walter Camp Player of the Year Finalist
2022 Manning Award Finalist
2022 Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award Finalist
2022 Davey O'Brien Award Semifinalist
2022 Jason Witten Man of the Year Semifinalist
Davey O'Brien National Co-Quarterback of the Week (vs. #3 Alabama, 10/15/22)
Walter Camp National Offensive Player of the Week (vs. #20 Florida, 9/24/22)
Maxwell Award Player of the Week (vs. #20 Florida, 9/24/22)
SEC Offensive Player of the Week (at #17 Pitt, 9/10/22; vs. #20 Florida, 9/24/22, vs. Missouri, 11/12/22)
Reese's Senior Bowl Offensive Player of the Week (vs. #20 Florida, 9/24/22; vs. Missouri, 11/12/22)
Davey O’Brien Great 8 List (at #17 Pitt, 9/10/22; vs. #20 Florida, 9/24/22; vs. #3 Alabama, 10/15/22; vs. #19 Kentucky, 10/29/22; vs. Missouri, 11/12/22)
Manning Award Star of the Week (vs. #20 Florida, 9/24/22; vs. #3 Alabama, 10/15/22; vs. #19 Kentucky, 10/29/22, vs. Missouri, 11/12/22)
East-West Shrine Bowl “Monday Morning QB” (at #17 Pitt, 9/10/22; vs. #3 Alabama, 10/15/22)
2021 Davey O’Brien Award Semifinalist
2021 All-SEC Fourth Team (Phil Steele)
2021-22 First-Year SEC Academic Honor Roll
SEC Offensive Player of the Week (at #18 Kentucky, 11/6/21)
Davey O'Brien Award Great 8 (vs. South Carolina, 10/9/21)
Manning Award Star of the Week (at Missouri, 10/2/21; at #18 Kentucky, 11/6/21)
CFPA Honorable Mention National Performer of the Week (at Missouri, 10/2/21; at #18 Kentucky 11/6/21)
CAREER — from college bio
A program-changing quarterback who led Tennessee back to national prominence in his two seasons … Finished his time with the Vols as one of the most well-liked and respected players to dawn the Orange & White, holding a high standard for himself and his teammates in all facets of being a student-athlete ... Earned his undergraduate degree at Virginia Tech and spent four seasons with the Hokies prior to transferring to Tennessee officially on Jan. 8, 2021 … Played in 49 career games with 37 starts, including 24 games with 22 starts at Tennessee … For his entire collegiate career, put up 11,053 yards of total offense, completing 632-of-944 passes (66.9 percent) for 8,974 yards and 80 touchdowns with 12 interceptions ... Added 2,079 yards on 517 carries with 25 scores on the ground, including four 100-yard rushing games ... Owned a 15-7 record as a starter at Tennessee with the offense averaging 43.1 points per game and 512.3 yards per game in those 22 contests … In his two seasons at Tennessee, completed 435-of-632 passes (68.8) for 6,080 yards with 58 touchdowns and only five interceptions … Shattered Peyton Manning’s school record for career completion percentage (68.8) … Added 1,046 yards on 270 carries with 10 touchdowns on the ground at UT … Finished his Tennessee career with 58 TD passes, the fifth-most in program history ... Accounted for 7,126 yards of total offense in his 24 games as a Vol, the sixth-best total in program history ... One of only two players in school history to rush for 1,000 yards and throw for over 6,000 yards in a career, joining Joshua Dobbs … Ranks eighth all time in career passing yards at UT with 6,080, having passed Jeff Francis in his final game ... Threw multiple TD passes in 20 of his 24 games at UT, and accounted for multiple scores (rushing or passing) in 22 of his 24 games played in ... His 1,046 rushing yards are the third-most by a UT QB in career annals … Produced 15 games with at least one rushing touchdown and one passing score, including nine at UT … Owned seven 300-yard passing games, including six at UT … Owner of the program record with 20 consecutive games with a touchdown pass, surpassing Heath Shuler’s previous record of 18 from 1992-94 … Attempted 261 consecutive passes without an interception, the longest streak in program history and the third-longest streak in SEC history, before throwing a pick against Alabama (10/15/22) ... Saw his brilliant career come to an end in a Week 11 game at South Carolina (11/19) as he suffered a torn ACL in his left knee … Still managed to sweep SEC Offensive Player of the Year honors and become UT’s highest Heisman Trophy finisher in 25 years with fifth place … Defeated six AP Top 25 teams as a starter in his two seasons at UT … Comes from a family pedigree of quarterbacks, including his father and brother … Invited to the Reese’s Senior Bowl and NFL Combine following his collegiate career.
2022 – RS-SENIOR (SIXTH YEAR)
Put together arguably the greatest quarterback season in program history, earning SEC Offensive Player of the Year honors by the Associated Press and the league’s coaches while finishing fifth in voting for the Heisman Trophy … Received 17 first-place votes and recorded 226 points in the Heisman voting … Became the first Vol since Peyton Manning (1997) to earn SEC Player of the Year … A finalist for the Maxwell Award, Walter Camp Award, Manning Award and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award … Produced 3,565 yards of total offense, completing 229-of-329 passes (69.6 percent) for 3,135 yards with 27 touchdowns and only two interceptions while rushing 104 times for 430 yards and five scores on the ground … Started 12 games … Became just the fifth Vol in program history to pass for over 3,000 yards in a single season ... Broke his own single-season school record for completion percentage (69.6) … His 175.5 QB rating was second in UT single-season history behind his 2021 school record … That mark also ranked second in the nation in 2022 … His 9.5 yards per passing attempt tied for the national lead … Among the 66 FBS QBs who attempted 329 or more passes this season, he threw the fewest picks with only two … Led the SEC in four different categories: total offense per game (324.1), completion percentage (69.6), yards per pass attempt and QB rating … Claimed five wins over opponents ranked in the AP Top 25 at the time of meeting, combining for 1,817 yards of total offense and 16 touchdowns in those games … Went blow-for-blow in an offensive shootout at South Carolina (11/19), going 25-of-42 for 247 yards and three touchdowns in the game before going down with a season-ending knee injury on the first drive of the fourth quarter ... Got back on track in Senior Day win vs. Missouri (11/12), racking up 405 yards of total offense and four touchdowns, passing for three and rushing for another ... Hit on 25-of-35 (71.4 percent) passing, totaling 355 yards and finding Princeton Fant for a pair of scores and Jalin Hyatt on a 68 yard catch-and-run TD against the Tigers ... Added 50 yards on the ground, including a 14-yard rushing score ... Efficient in finding receivers against No. 3 Georgia, completing 23-of-33 (69.7 percent) passes, his fourth game of the season with 20 or more completions ... Had his 20-game passing TD streak broken in the loss in Athens ... Commanded the Tennessee offense with precision against No. 19 Kentucky (10/29), going 19-of-25 through the air with 245 yards and three touchdowns, including his 50th career TD at UT, a 55-yard strike to Jalin Hyatt on the Vols’ opening drive ... Ran the ball into the end zone in the third quarter vs. No. 19 Kentucky (10/29), looking off the defender on a sprint option and plunging over the goal line from eight yards out ... Didn’t even play a full half against UT Martin (10/22) and still threw for 276 yards on 18-of-24 passing with three TDs, including a 49-yard strike to Squirrel White ... Broke VFL Heath Shuler’s record for consecutive games with a passing touchdown against the Skyhawks, finding Ramel Keyton in the end zone on the final play of the first quarter to record his 19th straight game with a passing TD ... Shined in the spotlight against No. 3 Alabama (10/15), having a career-day through the air which saw him pass for 385 yards (career high) and five touchdowns (tied career high) while tossing the longest pass of his collegiate career, a 78-yard dime to Jalin Hyatt, who he connected with on all five touchdowns ... Finishing 21-of-30, Hooker’s 385 yards and five TDs were both the most by a Vol quarterback in the 105-game series with Alabama ... His 385 passing yards against the Tide ranked 16th in school history while five touchdowns tied for second in UT single-game history ... Made two incredible passing plays in the final 15 seconds to set up the game-winning field goal against the Tide … Excellent yet again at No. 25 LSU (10/8), going 17-of-27 passing for 239 yards and a pair of touchdowns while adding 56 rushing yards on 10 attempts ... Honored with six different weekly honors following his performance in the win over No. 20 Florida (9/24) ... Became just the second quarterback in program history to pass for 300+ yards and run for 100+ yards in win against the Gators, joining Josh Dobbs who did so twice during his Tennessee career ... Completed 22-of-28 passing for 349 yards and a pair of touchdowns while adding 112 rushing yards on 13 carries and a score against Florida (9/24), finishing the victory with 461 yards of total offense, a new career high ... Started the Florida game 2-of-2 passing before his streak of 14-straight completions was broken — tying the third-longest in program history, matching Tyler Bray who did it vs. Georgia State and Florida in 2012 ... Highly efficient in the start against Akron (9/17), going 14-for-18 with 298 yards and a pair of touchdowns, including a 57-yard hook-up with Jalin Hyatt, while adding 24 yards on the ground ... Threw for 325 yards and two touchdowns, including a go-ahead 28-yard connection with Cedric Tillman in overtime to help propel the Vols past No. 17 Pitt (9/10) on the road ... Picked up right where he left off a season ago, throwing for two touchdowns while adding two more on the ground in season-opening win vs. Ball State (9/1) ... Completed 18-of-25 passes for 221 yards and added 12 yards rushing on five carries vs. the Cardinals.
2021 – RS-SENIOR
Made a significant impact in his first season at UT, taking over the QB starting role in Week 3 and becoming one of the top players in the SEC … Played in all 13 games with 11 starts … Became Tennessee’s first Davey O’Brien Award semifinalist since Erik Ainge in 2006 … Racked up 3,561 yards of total offense, which ranked fourth in the SEC and fourth in UT single-season history … Shattered two school single-season records – passer efficiency rating and completion percentage … Led the SEC and ranked third in the FBS setting in passer efficiency rating (181.4) … His 68.0 completion percentage was second in the SEC and 13th in the FBS … Completed 206-of-303 passes for 2,945 yards and 31 touchdowns with three interceptions ... Of the 72 FBS QBs who attempted 300+ passes during the season, tied for the fewest interceptions among those … Attempted 140 consecutive passes without a pick from Tennessee Tech (9/18) to Alabama (10/23), the fourth-longest streak in program history ... Ranked third in the SEC and tied for third in program history in single-season passing TDs (31) ... Tallied four 70+ yard touchdowns, which tied for the most in the country ... His 2,945 yards passing was fourth in the SEC and 10th in single-season school annals … Averaged 9.7 yards per passing attempt, which ranked second in the SEC and fourth in the nation … For the year, rushed for 616 yards on 166 carries with five scores on the ground … The rushing yards were the third-most by a QB in UT single-season history … Accounted for five touchdowns and 437 offensive yards in the Music City Bowl vs. Purdue (12/30), completing 26-of-42 passes for a career-best 378 yards and his first career five-TD passing game … Fired two spectacular clutch TDs in the fourth quarter and set UT bowl records in total offense and passing TDs … Tossed a pair of touchdowns on 10-of-18 passing for 156 yards vs. Vanderbilt (11/27), adding 75 yards rushing in the win against the Commodores ... Completed 85.0 percent of his passes (17-20) vs. South Alabama (11/20), the best mark by a UT QB since Joshua Dobbs completed 91.2 percent against Vandy in 2016 (min. 20 att.) … Finished with 273 passing yards and two passing TDs and also had a rushing TD vs. the Jaguars ... Was 24-of-37 for 244 yards and a touchdown against No. 1 Georgia (11/13) ... Gutsy effort in road win at No. 18 Kentucky (11/6), throwing for 316 yards and four touchdowns to earn SEC Offensive Player of the Week honors … Hit for passes of 75 and 72 yards on the first two drives of the game against the Wildcats, while finishing 15-of-20 … Completed 19 passes on 28 attempts while throwing for 282 yards, the third-most in a single game in his career, and three touchdowns at No. 4 Alabama (10/23) ... Was 17-of-26 passing for 233 yards and a touchdown while recording his second-career 100-yard rushing output (108) and a score vs. No. 13 Ole Miss (10/16) ... Recorded 225 yards passing and three touchdowns for the second consecutive game, going 17-of-23 in win vs. South Carolina (10/9) ... Also ran for 66 yards and a touchdown on 20 attempts against the Gamecocks ... Became the first Vol quarterback since Tyler Bray to have multiple passing TDs in five consecutive games ... Started at Missouri (10/2), completing 15-of-19 passes for 225 yards and three touchdowns ... Also ran for 80 yards and a TD to finish with 305 yards of total offense in win against the Tigers ... Made his first SEC road start at No. 11 Florida (9/25), going 13-of-23 for 221 yards and two touchdowns ... Also ran for 23 yards on 12 carries against the Gators ... Linked up with JaVonta Payton for a 75-yard touchdown at UF, the longest pass play at UT since Oct. 31, 2015 ... Made his first start as a Vol against Tennessee Tech (9/18), connecting for 17 completions on 25 attempts with 199 yards and three touchdowns ... Ran for a team-high 64 yards and a touchdown on nine attempts against the Golden Eagles ... Became the first Vol QB to throw for at least three TDs and rush for at least one TD in the same game since Joshua Dobbs threw for three and rushed for two on Nov. 19, 2016 against Missouri ... Saw significant action against Pitt (9/11), completing 15-of-21 passes for 188 yards and two touchdowns while rushing for 49 yards ... Made his Tennessee debut in the season-opener against Bowling Green (9/2), completing his only pass attempt for five yards in the fourth quarter.
2020 – RS-JUNIOR (VIRGINIA TECH)
Played in eight games and was the starting signal caller for seven contests during the COVID-19 shortened season … Was a perfect 10-for-10 passing for 183 yards and ran for three touchdowns at Louisville (10/31) ... Ran for 98 yards and threw for 223 yards at Wake Forest (10/24) ... Made his first start of the season against Boston College (10/17), completing 11 passes for 111 yards and leading the team in rushing with 164 yards and three scores ... Saw his first action of 2020 at UNC (10/10), throwing for two touchdowns and rushing for one ... Did not play in the first two games against NC State and Duke.
2019 – RS-SOPHOMORE (VIRGINIA TECH)
Took the reins as the starter in eight games and played in 11 contests … Completed 99-of-162 passes (61.1 percent) for 1,555 yards with 13 touchdowns and only two picks … Also carried the ball 123 times for 356 yards with five scores … Led Tech in total offense (1,911 yards) and passing yards (1,555) and was responsible for a team-high 18 touchdowns (13 passing, five rushing), while ranking second on the squad in rushing (356 yards) … In his six wins as Tech’s starter, he completed 68-of-108 passes (63.0 percent) for 1,126 yards with 10 touchdowns and no interceptions (181.1 rating) in those contests … His six consecutive wins in his first six starts for Tech tied for the third-longest streak by a Hokies’ starting signal-caller at the beginning of his career dating back to 1999 … Set a program record with 124 consecutive pass attempts without an interception to begin his career … Threw 13 touchdowns and only two picks in 2019, good for a 6.50 TD/INT ratio, a mark that led all ACC players with 150 or more pass attempts … Only five Power Five quarterbacks with 300 or more pass attempts registered a TD/INT ratio of 6.50 or better in 2019 - Ohio State’s Justin Fields (13.67), Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa (11.00), LSU’s Joe Burrow (10.0), Oregon State’s Jake Luton (9.33) and Arizona State’s Jayden Daniels (8.50) … Threw two interceptions on 162 attempts in 2019, good for a 1.2 INT percentage, a figure that led all ACC passers with 150 or more pass attempts … Only six Power Five quarterbacks with 250 or more pass attempts registered an INT percentage of 1.2 or lower in 2019 - Arizona State’s Daniels (0.6), Oregon State’s Luton (0.8), Ohio State’s Fields (0.8), LSU’s Burrow (1.1), Alabama’s Tagovailoa (1.2) and South Carolina’s Tryan Hilinski (1.2) … Completed his first career pass in a Tech uniform for eight yards vs. Duke (9/27) … Made his first career start at Miami (10/5) and guided Tech to a 42-35 win over the heavily-favored Hurricanes … Threw for 184 yards with three touchdowns, while running for a career-best 76 yards and another TD in the victory … Completed 16 passes for 261 yards with three scores vs. Rhode Island (10/12) and ran for 43 yards … Completed eight passes on 12 attempts for 127 yards and a touchdown before exiting the game due to injury vs. North Carolina (10/19) … Did not play at Notre Dame (11/2) due to that knee injury … Returned to the starting lineup to lead Tech to a 36-17 victory vs. No. 22 Wake Forest (11/9), throwing for 242 yards while rushing for 69 yards with one touchdown … Threw for 159 yards and one touchdown and also ran for two scores in a 45-0 win at Georgia Tech (11/16) … In a start in a 28-0 win vs. Pitt (11/23), threw for 153 yards and two touchdowns, including a career-long 71-yard pass to WR Tayvion Robinson … Threw for a season-high 311 yards and one touchdown at Virginia (11/29) … Also ran the ball a season-high 21 times for 44 yards with a 34-yard touchdown vs. UVA … Registered 110 passing yards and two touchdowns in the Belk Bowl vs. Kentucky (12/31) and also ran the ball 12 times for 50 yards.
2018– RS-FRESHMAN (VIRGINIA TECH)
Played in six games … Took one snap vs. Boston College (11/3) ... Tallied two carries at Duke (9/29) ... Had a 69-yard touchdown run, his first collegiate score, vs. William & Mary (9/8).
2017 – FRESHMAN (VIRGINIA TECH)
Did not see game action and redshirted.
Four-star prospect by 247Sports and a three-star recruit by Rivals … Played for head coach Steven Davis at Dudley … Followed in the footsteps and played quarterback at the same high school as VFL Emmanuel Moseley, who also played QB and DB … Passed for 6,027 yards and 55 touchdowns and rushed for 2,975 yards with 48 touchdowns … Three-time all-conference selection … Two-time Associated Press All-State team … All-State Player of the Year by NC Preps … Two-time state champion … Named the 2016 championship game MVP after accounting for six touchdowns … Finished his career as Dudley’s all-time leading passer … Scored more than 1,000 points in basketball and was a three-time All-Metro conference selection.
Full name is Alan Hendon Hooker … Born Jan. 13, 1998 … Son of Alan and Wendy Hooker … Father, Alan, is enshrined in the North Carolina A&T Hall of Fame after enjoying a stellar playing career as quarterback … Alan was the 1986 National Black College Offensive Player of the Year … Younger brother, Alston, followed in their father’s footsteps and is also playing QB at North Carolina A&T … Has one sister, Nile … Says his father is his biggest inspiration because he put the ball in his hand at a young age and taught him the value of hard work … Earned his undergraduate degree in public relations from Virginia Tech in December 2020 … Currently pursuing a Master of Science degree in agricultural leadership, education and communication ... Favorite movie is “He Got Game” … Favorite TV show is “Martin” … Hendon is a practicing Baptist Christian who routinely cites his faith as what drives him. Hendon and his brother wrote a faith-based children’s scripture book called “The ABCs of Scripture for Athletes” that debuted during the 2021 holiday season … He is a leader in the community and was honored by being named a semifinalist for the Jason Witten Collegiate Man of the year award. Always wanted to be like his dad and followed the career of NFL star and fellow Greensboro native Keenan Allen … Started playing football at the age of four at the local YMCA … Twitter handle is @henhook2 and Instagram handle is @henhook_112.
(+) Coming off 11-19-22 Knee INJ...Transfer from Virginia Tech
Pro Day Results: