Massive OT Josh Hawkins makes decision

Bobby Petrino and the Louisville Cardinals hosted an impressive group of recruits over the weekend, and the first verbal commitment has already rolled in. Massive 6-7, 305-pound offensive tackle Josh Hawkins, who made an official visit for the Cardinals 41-17 win over Syracuse, reached his decision before heading home Sunday afternoon.

Bobby Petrino's Cardinals reeled in a big fish Sunday afternoon when massive 6-7, 305-pound Josh Hawkins verbally committed to play football next year for Louisville.

Hawkins, a three-star offensive tackle from Greenville, Alabama, is rated the No. 84 offensive line prospect nationally by Hawkins made an official visit to U of L over the weekend, and decided to cast his lot with the Cardinals before heading home.

"It was great," Hawkins told Inside The Ville of his visit. "I committed to Louisville while I was there. I liked that a lot of their players on the team from Alabama. Redshirt freshman Michael Adams was my host and I felt real comfortable with the players and coaches. That was a big factor in my decision."

Hawkins was one of a large contingent of prospective student-athletes that Louisville hosted for Saturday's home win over Syracuse. Despite the smallest home crowd of the season for the Cardinals, Hawkins came away impressed by the Louisville fans and the atmosphere at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium.

"I liked that the fans are behind the players 100 percent," said Hawkins.

Hawkins also had offers from Mississippi State, Alabama, Auburn, Arkansas, LSU and Oklahoma. And while he gave Petrino a non-binding verbal commitment over the weekend, Hawkins said he still may take some other official visits before February's national signing day.

"I might take some more visits," he said. "I may go to Michigan State, and maybe Arkansas and LSU."

With U of L losing both starting offensive tackles after this year – Travis Leffew and Jeremy Darveau – Hawkins said that the possibility of early playing time also worked in the Cardinals favor.

"They need a tackle to come in early and play, and I think I'll have a shot at one of those spots next season," Hawkins said.

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