Former McEachern High School standout Bailey Hockman is looking for a new home.
After a season in which he helped lead North Carolina State to a Top 25 ranking and a trip to the Gator Bowl, Hockman decided to transfer. He entered the transfer portal Wednesday and released a statement on Twitter.
“First off I would like to thank God for giving me the opportunity to be a part of this program and helping mold myself into the man I am meant to be,” Hockman tweeted. “I would like to thank my parents, sister Savanna, and friends for their continued support and love for me regardless of circumstances.
“This university and program has done so much for my life as (an) athlete and (a) man. I want to personally thank coach (Dave) Doeren and coach (Tim) Beck for helping me become a better person on and off the field. Also coach Thunder (Dantonio Burnette) and the strength staff for their effort and support to help me become a stronger athlete, and show me true leadership.
“Last but not least, my teammates. I love each and every one of my brothers. I wish you nothing but the best for you guys and enjoyed spending countless hours grinding and bonding. Relationships that will last a lifetime.
“With that said, I will be putting my name into the transfer portal and grad transferring. My recruitment will reopen and I look forward to the next university God allows me the blessing of being at.”
Hockman, a redshirt junior, threw for 2,088 yards, 13 touchdowns and 11 interceptions as he started nine games for N.C. State in 2020. For his career with the Wolfpack, he threw for 2,634 yards, 14 touchdowns and 15 interceptions.
Hockman started 2020 fall camp as the backup to Devin Leary, but with Leary in COVID-19 protocols for three weeks leading up to the season opener, Hockman started the first game against Wake Forest. After leading the Wolfpack to a victory, he struggled the following week against Virginia Tech and was replaced in the lineup by Leary.
Hockman returned to the starting spot in October after Leary suffered a torn ACL. The 6-foot-2, 200-pound signal-caller played the best game of his career against Syracuse in November, completing 23 of 31 passes for 313 yards and four touchdowns.
With the expected return of Leary and the addition of four-star recruit Aaron McLaughlin for next season. Hockman’s role was expected to return to the back-up roll at best.
Doeren told WRAL radio in Raleigh, North Carolina, that he understood Hockman’s decision.
“Love Bailey and appreciate everything he has done for our program,” Doeren said. “He stepped up this year big time. He wants to be a starter next year and we know with Devin coming back that is a tough spot for him.”
Wherever Hockman ends up, it will be the fourth program of his career, and the fifth that he has committed to.
While at McEachern, Hockman was committed to Georgia, but he changed his mind once coach Mark Richt was fired. He then signed with Florida State and redshirted during the 2017 season under then-coach Jimbo Fisher.
In 2018, Hockman competed with Deondre Francois and James Blackman for the starting job under then-new coach Willie Taggart. When the Seminoles decided to go with Blackmon, Hockman attended Hutchinson Community College in Kansas for the 2018 football season, then transferred to N.C. State for 2019.
This time, Hockman will not have to sit out a season because he will be moving as a graduate transfer. Also, with the NCAA providing a blanket waiver to all fall players for the 2020 season due to the pandemic, he will have two years of eligibility remaining.