"Marqui came to me and expressed an interest in getting a fresh start on the football field," Gators coach Will Muschamp said in a release. "He was never in trouble off the field and was attentive in the classroom. We appreciate the way he carried himself and represented the program and wish him nothing but the best of luck in the future."
The position switch wasn't the best sign for playing time. The Florida coaches spent the spring trying to get a better idea of the depth chart at receiver, and it was decided that Hawkins needed to move to the defensive side of the ball. He had offers from Southeastern Conference schools on both sides of the football coming out of high school.
"I appreciate the support that has been in place since the day I got to Gainesville," Hawkins said. "I will always remember my boys in the locker room and the coaching staff, but I think it's in my best interest to get a fresh start playing football somewhere else. I will be watching next fall as the program continues to rise back to the top."