When we told you earlier this week who the Sooners might target at quarterback in this 2013 class after missing out on Max Browne, you might have got the impression that the player we deemed as the third choice was something of an afterthought. Well that changed pretty considerably based on the quotes that ESPN's Sooner Nation ($) received from said player.
Kelly Hilinski is a 6'6" 220 pound quarterback out of Sherman Oaks (CA) football factory Notre Dame H.S. and he is taking his college future into his own hands.
Hilinski, 6-foot-6 and 220 pounds, knew OU quarterbacks coach Josh Heupel would stay up Wednesday to make sure Browne confirmed his decision to USC so Hilinski struck first.
He sent a text message to Heupel saying, "I'm still ready to be Oklahoma's quarterback." Heupel emailed Hilinski on Thursday morning and the two are scheduled to talk Friday night.
"I'm not taking a backseat to anybody anymore," Hilinski said. "OU is such a great fit, such a great program."
With the Sooners focused primarily on Browne, there had not been much talk recently about not just Hilinski but any other 2013 quarterbacks. However with Browne's announcement Wednesday night that he had chosen to attend USC, the talk as to where the Sooners will turn now is starting to heat up again. Based on those quotes above, clearly Hilinski wants to make sure he's part of the conversation.
The obvious thing that stands out on film is his substantial size. He almost looks like an NBA center out there playing quarterback. In all seriousness, what really stands out (and granted it's a two minute highlight clip) is how almost all of his throws hit the receiver in stride. He displays a good touch and more than once hangs on throws where the defender is baring down on him (again, granted at 6'6" 220 that is a little easier to do). This is a kid who only started playing quarterback in the seventh grade, so he is still learning to play the position and all that it entails.
What OU fans will like to hear is that Hilinski has been working with QB guru George Whitfield to refine his mechanics. Oklahoma fans should recognize the name as Whitfield is the same guy that Landry Jones visited just last month.
It will be interesting to see how this develops going forward as Oklahoma will almost assuredly take one quarterback in this 2013 class, so for a school like OU it will be a highly coveted offer. Rather than the two horse race we believed it to be between Cody Thomas and Brayden Scott, we've got a another entry and he's looking to be taken quite seriously.