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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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One step away
June 8, 2024

King’s coronation

Photo by via

Redshirt freshman Haynes King is no stranger to the spotlight. King recorded a successful high school career as quarterback for the Longview Lobos while also becoming one of the top recruits in the nation. 

Raised by a Northwestern All-American and East Texas Hall of Honor head coach, Haynes King’s love of the sport comes as no surprise. 

Texas A&M’s new starting quarterback was born in Longview, home of King’s alma mater and the 2018 state champion Lobos, Longview High School. Known for its successful football program, the high school is led by head football coach and King’s father, John, who has an overall record of 180-36 with the Lobos and a 2018 state championship under his belt. 

Haynes King has always been a student of the game. In an interview with ET Varsity in 2018, King said he never missed a Lobos game growing up. He would break down each play and study the games as if he was preparing for an upcoming exam. 

“That’s what I do,” King said to ET. “When I was a ball boy, I would be watching the game and taking notes on how to handle that atmosphere, and it helped me in the long run.” 

During his sophomore season in high school, King recorded 1,662 yards in the air, with 20 touchdowns and only five interceptions. On the ground, he rushed for 222 yards, scored two touchdowns and averaged 11.7 yards-per-carry. He ended the season with a 13-2 record and brought his team to the 6A Division II state semifinals. 

In 2018, King led his team to the state championship where the Longview Lobos defeated the Westbrook Bruins 35-34 in a game which went down to the wire. During the matchup, King ran for 65 yards and broke out a 29-yard sprint into the endzone. With an even more impressive game passing, the quarterback went 16 for 27 on completions and threw for 423 yards and two touchdowns. 

“Haynes told me he was going to win a state championship, and I had given him hell ever since he started football because I won one in high school, and I know how special those are,” King’s father told Saturday Down South in 2020. “He backed it up and played the best in the biggest moment of his high school career.” 

King capped off his junior year with 3,879 yards passing, 664 yards rushing and 50 touchdowns total. 

According to 24/7 Sports, King attended the Opening Final in Frisco with the top recruits in the nation, where he recorded a 4.52-second 40-yard dash, a 4.02-second shuttle and a 36.2-inch vertical. The redshirt freshman has only increased his speed since the Opening. Once running a 4.52-second 40-yard dash, A&M coaches now clock him out at 4.45

King finished his senior season with the Lobos as the District 11 6A Offensive MVP and an Under Armour All-American. He totaled 1,996 passing yards, 506 rushing yards and 30 touchdowns combined rushing and passing. According to 24/7 Sports, A&M’s new starting quarterback led his class as a 131st-ranked player nationally, 5th-ranked best dual-threat quarterback and a 4-star recruit with a rating of 0.9397. 

Outside of football, King was an offensive threat on the basketball court in high school. He also ran the 400-meter, 4×400-meter relay and was a district champion in discus for the Lobos track & field team. 

Due to COVID-19, A&M was only allowed to play 10 games during the 2020 season. King made an appearance in two of them, where he put together drives that made fans excited for his future. Against Alabama, the quarterback recorded five carries for 43 yards, with a career-high 22-yard run, and connected on a 17-yard dime to then-sophomore wide receiver Chase Lane. In the win against South Carolina, King put together a 75-yard drive, topped off with his first collegiate touchdown on a 45-yard crossing route to then-junior tight end Max Wright. 

On Wednesday, Aug. 25, coach Jimbo Fisher announced that King will be “QB1” for the upcoming season opener against Kent State.

“We talked to [the players] yesterday, and right now Haynes will be our starter,” Fisher told ESPN 97.5 radio in Houston. “I feel very comfortable with both guys. I think both guys can win and play well. I think both guys had an outstanding camp.”

King’s mobility in the pocket and ability to throw on the run are two of the many reasons he is listed among the top dual-threats in the country and is now the starting quarterback for A&M. 

King’s knowledge of the game, athleticism and leadership skills have earned him the keys to Kyle Field. For the first time in four years, A&M has a new face lined up behind the center and a leader who is ready to lead his team and the 12th Man to their first national championship in 82 years.

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