After opening 2012 competing in Florida at the Under Armour All-American Game, four-star defensive tackle Donald Hopkins (Lago Vista, Texas) made his decision to decommit from Missouri public earlier this week. He described the decommitment with three words.
“Didn’t feel comfortable,” he said.
It’s been speculated for weeks that Hopkins wasn’t a fan of Missouri’s move from the Big 12 to the SEC. Most of his family lives in Texas, and playing in the SEC would mean fewer opportunities for family members to see him play in person.
In addition to the conference move, Hopkins has been asked about other reasons for the decommitment. Defensive scheme? Coaching staff? A feeling of the campus being a second home?
“I guess a little of everything,” Hopkins said, “besides the coaching. The coaching there is amazing.”
A 6-foot-2, 275-pound senior who is ranked No. 17 among defensive tackles nationally, Hopkins is scheduled to visit Utah this weekend. Safeties coach and recruiting coordinator Morgan Scalley is his primary recruiter at Utah.
Baylor was a team Hopkins considered before choosing Missouri in July. The Tigers announced they would leave the Big 12 for the SEC in November. Baylor has offered, as have Kansas and Iowa State, schools that would allow him to play out of state but have family members watch games in Texas. Houston currently is a major player in the Hopkins sweepstakes, as well.
In regards to staying in Texas, Hopkins has an offer from SMU, which will play in the Big East along with Houston beginning in 2013. He additionally has offers from Texas State and UTSA, two Texas schools moving from FCS to FBS play next season. Both schools are expected to make impacts in the near future in the WAC.
Hopkins is the 28th-ranked player in Texas. He has national offers from Arizona, Arizona State, Wake Forest and BCS national champion Alabama.