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Sunday, February 3, 2013
Hansen: OU junior day has 'different feel'

By Bob Przybylo

ESPN Watch List quarterback Justice Hansen (Edmond, Okla./Santa Fe) can stop having people ask about when the Sooners will offer. It’s a question he has heard several times in the last year.

Hansen can answer now. The offer came Saturday, and the Sooners are officially in the race to land one of the more highly touted in-state prospects of the last few years.

Justice Hansen
Watch List quarterback Justice Hansen plans to visit a few more schools this spring.
It’s not that OU quarterbacks coach Josh Heupel hasn’t liked what he has seen from Hansen. Hansen has camped at OU since he was a freshman. But if there’s one word to describe Heupel’s approach to making quarterback offers, it’s methodical.

Heupel doesn’t offer many per recruiting class, and Hansen has the honor of being the first one to officially get the invitation from the Sooners.

“I can compare them to other teams that have offered now,” Hansen said. “There are a lot of other quarterbacks that they’re looking at. When you don’t have the offer, you never know 100 percent.”

A lot of people expected Hansen to get an offer from OU on Saturday at junior day. Hansen admits he was hoping it would come.

Following lunch, Heupel asked Hansen to visit OU head coach Bob Stoops’ office. That’s where he was given the offer.

Even though Hansen has grown up an OU fan and has a big tie-in to the program because of his father playing baseball for the Sooners, Hansen never entertained the thought of committing on the spot.

“No, I haven’t been to enough places,” Hansen said. “There are a lot of other schools I want to see.”

Hansen most likely won’t see them at junior days, though. Because he plays basketball, it’s tough for him to lock down dates where he can be on campus.

The spring is another story. He said he intends to visit Oklahoma State, Texas A&M and Arkansas. Hansen has offers from the Aggies and Razorbacks.

Hansen has toured the OU campus before, but he did there was a change of tone with the coaches Saturday. Everything became a lot more realistic, both to Hansen and to the coaches.

“It definitely had a different feel to it,” Hansen said. “They were talking about how I fit in and things like that. I’m looking at it differently, too. I’m going to start looking at their recruiting classes and seeing who they have coming in and things like that.”

Hansen was one of several quarterbacks at junior day, but the only one to get an offer. That fact was not lost on Hansen.

“It does mean a lot,” Hansen said. “It means OU is a legitimate option for me moving forward. Seeing what Sam Bradford did. Seeing what Landry Jones has done. It’s not just one quarterback. It’s the system, and the system works.”

Hansen also has offers from Arizona State and Missouri and has received an invitation to Florida State’s junior day, although he doesn’t believe he is going to be able to attend.