Ex-Virginia Tech QB Hendon Hooker announces commitment to Tennessee

Sam Cooper
·2 min read

Former Virginia Tech quarterback Hendon Hooker plans to continue his career in the SEC.

Hooker, who started 14 games over the last two seasons for the Hokies, announced Thursday that he has committed to play at Tennessee. Hooker has two seasons of eligibility remaining and will be able to play in 2021.

After redshirting in 2017 and seeing limited action in 2018, Hooker emerged as Virginia Tech’s top quarterback during the 2019 season. He played in 11 games and made eight starts and ended up throwing for 1,555 yards and 13 touchdowns with just two interceptions while completing 61.1% of his throws. He also had 356 yards and five scores rushing.

Hooker missed the beginning of the 2020 season but ended up suiting up in eight games with six starts. Over that span, he threw for 1,339 yards and nine touchdowns with five interceptions. His completion percentage jumped up to 65.3%. His rushing totals increased too. Hooker finished the year with 620 yards and nine touchdowns on the ground.

Virginia Tech quarterback Hendon Hooker (2) plays against Pittsburgh in an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020, in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Virginia Tech quarterback Hendon Hooker (2) plays against Pittsburgh in an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020, in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Tennessee’s QB struggles

The quarterback position has been a bit of a revolving door at Tennessee under Jeremy Pruitt. In 2020, four different quarterbacks played for the Vols: Jarrett Guarantano, Harrison Bailey, JT Shrout and Brian Maurer.

Guarantano put his name in the transfer portal. Shrout already announced a transfer to Colorado. Maurer has primarily been a backup, but Bailey was the program’s prized recruit in 2020. The five-star prospect played in six games and finished the year with 578 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions while completing 70.6% of his throws.

In addition to having Bailey and Shrout, Tennessee also added Kaidon Salter, a four-star recruit, in its 2021 recruiting class. Hooker, should he end up in Knoxville, brings significant starting experience to the QB room.

The news of Hooker’s commitment comes the day that multiple outlets reported details of an investigation into alleged impermissible benefits and other violations in the Tennessee program.

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