KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Tennessee redshirt senior quarterback Hendon Hooker is looking to build off of his record-setting 2021 campaign in orange and white.

In 2021, Hooker racked up 3,565 yards of total offense seeing action in all 13 games with 11 starts. He broke two school single-season records in passer efficiency rating and completion percentage and became UT’s first Davey O’Brien Award semifinalist since Erik Ainge in 2006.

Hooker said he is using the offseason to sharpen his football IQ.

“Get in there with the coaches and go over film, talk through different situations, and just approach the game from a mental standpoint,” Hooker said of his time spent this winter. “As a player-coach kind of thing on the field, being in total control of the offense and just being efficient.”

The signal-caller was sacked 36 times last season. He said he is also learning to limit the wear and tear on his body this season by learning to slide versus taking a hit.

“I’m getting a lot of, “You need to slide. You need to throw it away,'” Hooker said. “Just taking hits off my body is good not only for myself but the team, knowing that I can rock-and-roll every day, bring that same energy and juice. I’m just trying to stay healthy is the main goal there.”

Hooker said he spends at least eight hours of his day in the building watching film, working on his footwork, or doing recovery work in the cold tub; taking the steps to be able to operate the offense as efficiently as possible.