NFL DraftProspect Interviews

2021 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Marcus Hawkins, LB, Sacramento State University

Marcus Hawkins Sacramento State
Marcus Hawkins was Sacramento State’s leading tackler in 2019. He recently sat down with Draft Diamond’s writer Jimmy Williams.
  • Name: Marcus Hawkins
  • Height: 5’11”
  • Weight: 230 lbs
  • Position: LB
  • College: Sacramento State University
  • Twitter: @marcushawkins98

Tell us about your university/college. Did you participate in any other activities or campus organizations other than football?

Sacramento State is a beautiful campus. The community really supports the school. Plus they have a really good rivalry with UC Davis. But for doing things outside of football I have done some stuff with giving back. Did a little basketball camp with kids with special needs. I loved that opportunity. We support our other sports as well

What do your teammates say is your best quality?

The top thing that comes to mind would be being able to lead by example on and off the field. I know for sure the whole Linebacker room thinks of me as a leader. If they have questions they come to me. As for the team, they all know I’m the person to line people up and sometimes remind people what they have to do. Also, another quality would be being reliable. Since I’ve been at Sacramento State I have never missed a practice or a game. So the two that stand out to me would be leadership and reliability. 

What kind of role do you see yourself in on the team? What scheme and/or position suits your skill set? 

I can see myself on any team being a leader. More of a leader by example than a vocal person. Plus I hold myself to high standards. I really love what football is becoming today. With that kind of 4-2-5 look. We run that at Sac State, and I love it. I get to play in space a lot and do a lot of coverage from man to zone. Since college football and NFL are becoming more of a passing league it is a good set to run. 

Who is the best player you have ever played against in college? 

From a lineman standpoint, I would say the Guard from Fresno State was the best we played this year. Real strong at the point of attack. Really good run blocker. For the Skill position we play Eno Benjamin and Brandon Ayukia from Arizona state who were really good athletes. 

Which one of your teammates impresses you the most?

I would have to say our boundary edge rusher Josiah Erickson. Coming into the season he was third on the depth chart. People got hurt week 1, and he worked his tail off to get the starting spot week 2. And from there he played really well. He was reliable all season. He impressed me by stepping into the role and playing well. 

Describe a time in your life when you were able to overcome a struggle.

One of the toughest things that happened to me was when my dad was in the hospital for his heart. Things weren’t looking good but just being able to be by his side and let him know there is nothing to worry about at home. We will handle it. It gave me a good work ethic and taught me to always stay level-headed. But after some time, he was able to return back home. 

If you didn’t play football, what other sport would you play?

No doubt in my mind, I would be playing baseball. I played in high school and was really good. But I wanted to take the football route. Plus, my brother played baseball and was drafted by the Cleveland Indians and eventually played professionally in Japan. 

What is something that you are most proud of? What would you say is your biggest achievement?

From an individual standpoint, in Juco I was an All American as well as Defensive MVP of the conference my sophomore year. I also made the Big Sky 2nd team as a linebacker. As for team achievements, going to the state playoffs in Juco and winning the Big Sky are pretty big. First time in school history going to the playoffs, winning Big Sky and most wins in school history. 

Describe one of the most memorable plays of your collegiate career.

My first game at Sacramento state was very much anticipated. Coming in with a whole new staff and the city really feeling something special was going to happen. Opened up my career with an interception on the 3rd drive and had a really cool return which energized the crowd. It was a crazy feeling that day. 

NFL Draft Diamonds 2021 Small School Rankings

Do you have a favorite athlete or professional team? Is there a player that you model your game after? 

I love the Philadelphia Eagles. As for players, I loved Luke Kuechly from Carolina. His IQ and the way he prepared for games are off the charts. I try to play my game like him in the mind aspect. His play on the field is outstanding too don’t get me wrong. 

Who is your favorite music artist? What gets you pumped before a game? 

I’m not really big into music. I listen to country music and oldies so there are not really too many pump up songs.  

What is your favorite comfort food?

I love spaghetti

Do you have a favorite movie or actor?

Easily my top two movies are Step Brothers and Talladega Nights. Will Ferrell is my favorite actor. 

What do you do in your spare time? Do you have any hobbies? Any secret talents?

 I’m more of an outdoors man. I love to go fishing, camping, and paintballing.  Anytime I have free time outside of football, I’ll do one of these. Plus I play the video game a lot as well. 

Who or what motivates you the most?

My little brother Stefin is my biggest motivation. He suffers from epilepsy and can’t play football, but he absolutely loves it. I feel like he can play through me when he watches. He’s easily one of my biggest fans. He has never missed a game. 

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