Michigan running back Hassan Haskins has visited the Jacksonville Jaguars, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Detroit Lions leading up to the 2022 NFL Draft. Additionally, Haskins (6-foot-2, 228 pounds) has worked out privately for the New Orleans Saints. Among his meetings was a private dinner with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
“I’ve got to sell myself to teams,” Haskins said. “They’re going to get somebody that helps them win. I’m determined and wiling to help this team win. I’ve got it all. I bring a lot to the table that other players don’t have and aren’t willing to do to help a team win. Everybody seems like they love me. There’s been no negative feedback.”
Michigan RB Hassan Haskins prepared for the NFL Draft
The third-team All-American and All-Big Ten selection doesn’t have to wait long for his performance against Ohio State to come up during his conversations with NFL teams.
The bruising Michigan RB ran roughshod over the rival Buckeyes during a victory last season, rushing for a school-record 5 touchdowns as he gained 169 yards on the ground.
“All the time,” Haskins said in a telephone interview with Pro Football Network. “The NFL loves that game.”
It was the kind of performance that reminded NFL scouts, coaches, and executives of Haskins’ powerful running style and how he tramples defenders.
Haskins is recovering well from a high ankle sprain suffered in a playoff game against Georgia that sidelined him in the Senior Bowl all-star game. While the injury kept him out of agility drills at the NFL Combine, Haskins still bench pressed 225 pounds 27 times.
“I’m feeling amazing right now,” Haskins said. “My foot feels good. I’m running and doing all kinds of stuff. I’m ready to rock.”
Playing for Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, Haskins gained a lot of knowledge from the former San Francisco 49ers head coach.
“It was a lot of fun,” Haskins said. “He’s an interesting guy. He’s a smart dude. He’s prepared me to go to the next level. He has a lot of fun sayings.”
A former Missouri prep Offensive Player of the Year from St. Louis, Haskins rushed for a career-high 1,327 yards and a Michigan single-season record 20 touchdowns last season.
From linebacker to hard-nosed running back
A converted linebacker, Haskins rushed for 622 yards and 4 scores in 2019. He led the Wolverines with 375 rushing yards and 6 touchdowns in a COVID-19-shortened season in 2020. He finished with 2,324 career rushing yards, 30 touchdowns, and a 5.1 average per carry.
“I focus on playing between those white lines,” he said. “That’s all that matters. I’m a football player. They’re going to get a person who’s going to work, that’s dedicated to the game and being a team player. I’m going to bring that extra fuel. I know winning, and I love winning.”
A former basketball player and high jumper, Haskins rushed for 2,197 yards and 31 touchdowns as a senior in high school. He even added 9 sacks and 2 fumble recoveries, returning 1 for a touchdown.
As a junior, Haskins generated 12 sacks as a defensive end with 1,509 rushing yards and 19 touchdowns.
When Haskins isn’t playing football, he spends his time relaxing with his girlfriend and is an avid movie watcher, especially the Harry Potter series. His favorite restaurant when he’s home is “Sweetie Pie’s Upper Crust.”
“It’s fire,” he said. “It’s different. It’s soul food. I love it. Being from St. Louis means a lot, I put the whole city on my back. I represent for the older generation and the newer generation. I’m trying to put St. Louis on the map.”
Guided by agent Quincy Peyton
Haskins credits his agent, Quincy Peyton, for providing a lot of guidance during the NFL draft process.
“That’s my guy,” Haskins said. “Q is there for me at every step of the process. It’s amazing. He’s young, and he can relate to me. We can bond like that on a different level. It’s been amazing.”
Peyton, 26, is one of the youngest NFL agents registered with the NFL Players Association and also represents SMU wide receiver Danny Gray. Peyton, a Wasserman agent, is a former defensive back from Arkansas Tech and a three-year starter who played high school football in Dallas, Texas, at Mesquite High School. Building a strong connection with his players like Haskins and advocating for them with NFL teams is his priority.
“I’m genuine, and I care about my players,” Peyton said. “What made me want to be an agent was my best friend, Rashard Higgins. When he was going through the recruiting process with agents, I sat in on every single meeting. I was like, ‘This is kind of cool.’ I was seeing how agents were selling themselves and pitching them, and I thought this is something I want to do.”
Peyton’s career arc
Peyton interned at Young Money Sports for five years, working with Andy Simms, Nicole Lynn, and several other agents before joining Wasserman. Now, he works closely with more experienced agents, including Doug Hendrickson, CJ LaBoy, Mike Swenson, and Chafie Fields.
“Working with Wasserman has been a totally different experience,” he said. “There’s access to so many things. When I recruit guys like Hassan and Danny, I’m able to offer them a lot in terms of marketing and social media. It’s a wonderful start and a great experience that I pray can be forever. I’m a big brother to these guys. I’m four years older than Hassan. My approach is I can’t be too much of a friend all the time because I have to handle business and understand what it’s like to be 22 years old.
“I can relate to them because I’m closer in age. That’s where I separate myself. My end goal is I want to master football, do big contracts, be a successful agent, and do right by my players. When I master football, I want to do basketball and baseball. I don’t want to be boxed into football. I’m talented enough to do more. I’m excited.”
And Haskins is in a similar mindset. He can’t wait until the NFL Draft arrives.
“I am so excited,” he said. “All I want is to find out where I’m going and start bonding with my teammates.”