Big gloves and even bigger plays: Inside Auburn's recent run of transfer receivers
In just a few weeks, the Tigers added a former elite recruit, a WR with a nearly 50% TD rate and a 6-foot-4 vet who wears 4XL gloves.
WR Shane Hooks (Instagram)
SCOTTSBORO, Ala. — It didn’t take long for Shane “Hollywood” Hooks to stand out to Philip Montgomery.
Of course, the Auburn offensive coordinator was already impressed with Hooks’ film from Jackson State, where he had 66 catches for 775 yards and 10 touchdowns last season.
Even though he spent his first few seasons in college at Ohio and last year at the FCS level playing for Deion Sanders, Hooks graded out as a 4-star transfer receiver by 247Sports during this portal cycle.
But when Montgomery met Hooks in person, he could tell there was something different about the 6-foot-4 wideout from the initial handshake.
“He’s got some of the biggest hands I've ever seen,” Montgomery said Monday night before the annual meeting of the Jackson County Auburn Club in Scottsboro. “He wears a 4X glove. The first time I shook his hand, his fingers just kept wrapping around mine.”
Auburn got a commitment from Hooks — who was pledged to join Ole Miss’ transfer class not too long ago — early Sunday evening and officially announced his signing Monday morning.
Hooks became the fourth transfer wide receiver to sign with Auburn since the start of the offseason and the third since the end of spring practices. He joins North Texas transfer Jyaire Shorter and Ohio State transfer Caleb Burton III as the most recent pickups, with fellow big man Nick Mardner having arrived from Cincinnati earlier this year.
“We're really excited about adding those guys to that receiver room,” Montgomery said. “I think they're gonna allow us to do some things to dictate to defenses what they can try to take away or not be able to take away.
“I think it opens up our offense a little bit more, to add some experience outside — just like we're doing in the quarterback room. Guys that have been in the fire a little bit and understand how to find holes, how to separate, how to get off of coverages. Those things are going to be crucial.”