Shaved into Maryland safety Travis Hawkins' hair yesterday was his customary No. 19, as well as a nod to the Red team he was assigned to for the Terrapins' spring game.
His play stood out just as much.
"Probably the guy who shined the most and was coming off probably struggling the most --- and it shows you a little bit about his makeup --- is Travis Hawkins," defensive coordinator Don Brown said. "He made big tackles and big plays, and the previous scrimmage he made none. That's probably the guy I feel the best about."
His slickest play came in the second quarter, when he intercepted a Danny O'Brien pass in stride in the end zone to zap a drive that had reached the 32-yard line. But in general, the converted cornerback was aware of what he needed to do throughout the day.
Transferring that to the fall could be crucial for Maryland, which has two solid starters (Antwine Perez and Kenny Tate) and one known quantity as a backup (Eric Franklin, who also had an interception). Hawkins is the fourth safety, and would play plenty in Brown's scheme if he can secure the job.
But help is on the way with freshmen Titus Till and Matt Robinson arriving. Hawkins, then, is on the spot to quickly create some separation to get on the field as a redshirt freshman.
Yesterday certainly helped.
"Hawkins I would diagnose as having a poor scrimmage last week, and I think you asked him he would say it," Brown said. "He made the biggest jump in one week's time."