There was a lot of speculation that following the decision of quarterback Max Browne (Sammamish, Wash./Skyline) to commit to USC, the dominoes would start to fall.
The speculation is over. The other quarterbacks considered by Oklahoma for its 2013 class are starting to show their hand.
And one of those quarterbacks is tired of playing the waiting game. Kelly Hilinski (Sherman Oaks, Calif./Notre Dame) said the time for patience is over.
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.”
But Hilinski wanted to show Heupel a couple of things. One, that he wasn’t offended about being told he was a second choice. And two, that he’s ready to make the next step with the Sooners.
“OU is amazing. I’ve been building this relationship with Coach Heupel for the last two years, and I’m not ready for it to be over,” Hilinski said. “I know a lot of recruiting experts say Max Browne is the No. 1 quarterback. Personally, I think I’m better. I’m a competitor, and I want that shot.”
Hilinski admitted it was tough to not control his own destiny, at least when it came to the Sooners. The only way Hilinski was going to get a shot at OU was if Browne passed on the Sooners.
“At first, I didn’t understand, and it was really tough to accept,” Hilinski said. “I’m out to prove everybody wrong. One door closes and another one opens. My door with OU is always open.”
Hilinski’s spring break has just started, and he said he will take it easy the rest of this week but will be ready to hit the road next week.
He intends to visit Colorado, Arkansas and Oklahoma. The Razorbacks are Hilinski’s only official offer at this point.
“I started reaching out to schools after the all-America combines,” Hilinski said. “I was kind of confused why that first offer wasn’t coming so I took the initiative. I compiled my own highlights and sent it out to like 50 schools. Arkansas and Coach Bobby Petrino answered within 15 minutes.”
After more conversations, Petrino offered Hilinski. That didn’t mean Hilinski stopped talking with Heupel, but the tone changed in their once-a-week conversations.
Hilinski said instead of really talking about recruiting, Hilinski and Heupel have been more just sort of checking in and seeing how things are going at school and with his family and things of that nature.
“Coach Heupel is a great coach and a great guy,” Hilinski said. “I would love to get an opportunity to be coached by him and Bob Stoops.”