2018 forward Jaxson Hayes received a surprise offer from the Kentucky Wildcats recently, and now, he is planning on announcing his decision today.
Hays will make the call at 3:30 p.m. at Archbishop Moeller High School in Cincinnati. He has narrowed his list to Kentucky, Butler, Georgetown, Texas and Xavier, but has only taken official visits to Texas and Xavier.
Despite what the timing would suggest, many recruiting experts are not predicting Hayes to pick Kentucky. Instead, it seems as if Hayes may be heading to Austin and joining the Texas Longhorns.
All the predictions for Hayes’ Crystal Ball placed yesterday, when news broke of Hayes’ announcement, went to Texas, despite all the attention placed on Kentucky, who Hayes did take an unofficial visit with recently.
However, we gathered the staff here at A Sea of Blue to offer up their predictions on where Hayes will go.
It was puzzling when Calipari offered a 3 star big man who had never started a high school basketball game. To be fair, it’s a good high school team, but that is something that’s kind of unprecedented with Cal. Even Cauley-Stein, another late bloomer, had produced at the high school level.
Tai Wynyard was a four-star prospect. So for a guy like Hayes to come in as a project would be really interesting. Could he develop into a serviceable big man or go four years on the bench?
Who knows, but it seems like won’t matter and that the kid is leaning elsewhere. Which I’m okay with. He’s probably a great kid and will bring something to his new school. Cal did see something in him after all. But there are bigger fish to fry in 2018 recruiting class.
Jaxson Hayes is set to commit and it's believed he will select Texas over Kentucky, Butler, and others. Hayes is a late bloomer as many recruiting sites didn't give any gauge of what kind prospect he was. As a 6-10 three star now, Hayes impressed many this summer on the Adidas gauntlet. Being from Ohio, I watched Hayes log just 14 minutes last year in the OHSAA Division I title game where he didn't register a single point. I was confused as to why Cal offered Hayes a scholarship, but maybe he will develop further in the future.
I really like Hayes’ ceiling as a college player and will enjoy following his development in college. He’s only began to tap into the potential he has a basketball player, and I can see why John Calipari offered him. However, I think that was more of a conditional offer, where Hayes needed to perform well in his high school senior season and then be able to commit in the spring. I think had he waited that long, it’s possible Kentucky would have taken his commitment, but right now, there’s no chance they will with so many elite, proven talents still on the board.
The Jaxson Hayes story is still a mystery. Despite never starting a high school game, the 6-10 senior from nearby Cincinnati has watched his stock rise after a great summer on the AAU circuit. However, receiving an early offer from UK was a bit of a surprise as he needs to get physically stronger to play at the highest level. Based on previous reports, Texas Coach Shaka Smart made a huge impact on Hayes during the official visit and wants to take things slow with the three-star recruit. Hayes seems to be a great kid with huge potential. He just needs time and a low pressure situation.
Hayes is almost certainly going to pick Texas. The Wildcats trended upward after the offer, as Hayes seemed thrilled about receiving it. But since then he’s been warmer on the Longhorns. With the heap of talent likely to be on Kentucky’s roster next year, it’s easy to see why Hayes would fear his playing time wouldn’t be significant, not that that is definitely why he’s picking Texas.
Hayes said he had a lot of fun on his Texas visit, and had good things to say about head coach Shaka Smart. I could only see him picking Texas.
Talk about an unknown, Jaxson Hayes has come out of nowhere. He just recently earned his fourth star, and did not have any offers from major programs. However, he had a very strong summer and Calipari was quick to offer after seeing him play last month. With a commitment coming so close to his Kentucky offer, you would think Kentucky would be the leader. However, all signs point to Texas at this point. They were in on him a little earlier than Kentucky, and apparently he likes what Shaka Smart has to offer.