Hockaday waiting for offers

After a strong junior year, quarterback prospect is learning the ropes of the recruiting game

Luke Hockaday, a 6-foot-2, 180-pound class of 2007 quarterback prospect at Maroa-Forsyth High School in Maroa, Ill., has had a busy spring as he aims to draw scholarship interest from college recruiters.

There have been camps and combines, unofficial visits to campuses, spring-evaluation period visits from college coaches to his high school, phone calls from college coaches and the regular deluge of letters.

Hockaday, however, has not yet received a scholarship offer. He will be fourth-year starter in the fall, having split reps as a freshman before taking over as full-time starting signal caller his sophomore year. As a junior last season, Hockaday threw for more than 2,400 yards, 35 touchdowns and just six interceptions while completing 69 percent of his passes.

He seems to have the credentials to be a Division I quarterback, but Hockaday is stuck in a holding pattern, in what is still an early stage in the recruiting process for most prospects.

"It's a long process," Hockaday said in a telephone interview Sunday. "It's definitely a learning process. We've never had this happen in our family because I'm the oldest. It's a learning process for everybody. It's a good process, though. It's long. Just waiting for the offers to start rolling in, I guess."

Hockaday said Iowa, Northern Illinois and Division I-AA Eastern Illinois have been showing him the most interest. Iowa, Iowa State and Northern Illinois have called him this month. The schools that have visited Maroa-Forsyth include Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Northern Illinois, Northwestern, Eastern Illinois and Division I-AA Illinois State. Hockaday has made unofficial visits—either for a junior day or a spring practice—to Purdue, Iowa, Northern Illinois, Illinois and Illinois State.

"I haven't been up to Wisconsin yet, but I'm planning on doing that," Hockaday said.

The Badgers have been showing Hockaday some interest.

"I just get the occasional letter, about once a week," he said. "Nothing else really. Nothing drastic or anything."

Other schools have been more emphatic in their recruiting effort with Hockaday. He thinks an offer could be coming soon from Eastern Illinois, and his high school coach has told him that Indiana and Northern Illinois are considering offers.

"I don't know about those two but I'm almost positive that Eastern's really close," Hockaday said.

Hockaday was asked what he knew about the three Division I-A programs that appear to be showing him the most interest: Indiana, Northern Illinois and Iowa.

"I've never been to Indiana, but I'm planning on going to a one-day (camp) there for sure," he said.

"Northern Illinois—I'm really familiar. I know their coaches really well and talk to them a lot. I really like it up there…

"I know more about Iowa than any other school. I've been there like four times. I really get along with Coach (Lester) Erb, my recruiting coach. He's a great guy and I know a lot about that program."

Hockaday said he does not have any favorites at this point.

"I'm open to everybody," he said. "I'm open and if somebody is offering me than they are going to be jumping up high on my list. Just waiting for the right school, I guess."

What in general does he want from a college program?

"Just a good program, something that fits my offensive abilities," Hockaday said. "Coaches, location… and academics."

Hockaday attended the Maine South High School combine last week—a camp for quarterbacks and receivers to work on individual skills.

"We just threw routes to (the receivers) and worked on footwork and stuff so the coaches could see what we could do," Hockaday said.

Hockaday also attended a Nike camp and an Elite 11 quarterback camp in Atlanta. And in January he took part in the Scout.com combine in San Antonio.

"There were tons of coaches there," Hockaday said of the events in Georgia. "I felt like I did pretty well. I started to receive more interest from schools down south after that.

"Georgia Tech has been sending me a lot of stuff and talked to me a little bit. That's the main one down there."

Hockaday said he plans to go to a lot of one-day camps this summer. He hopes to decide this week which schools will be on his itinerary.

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