basketball Edit

Texas lands late blooming big Jaxson Hayes

Jaxson Hayes

Before it's all said and done, Jaxson Hayes may emerge as one of the best late-blooming prospects from the class of 2018. Now, he'll play his college ball at Texas.

Friday afternoon, the big man from Cincinnati announced during a press Moeller High School that he'll play for Shaka Smart and the Longhorns.

"I would like to announce that I'll be attending the University of Texas," said Hayes at his press conference.

Hayes visited Austin in early September and the visit sold him.

“The culture around the program,” Hayes told Dustin McComas of Orangebloods.com earlier this month about what stood out during his visit to Austin. “It’s really good. Family. Core values, that’s really good. It was a great vibe, really. The vibe around campus. Even walking around the guys at night, coaches on golf carts everyone goes nuts when the basketball team walks by. It’s a good feeling to have.”

We're looking at a really interesting recruit in Hayes. As a junior, he wasn't even a starter for his high school team and it took a late growth spurt for him to hit the college radar.

During the summer, he came to prominence playing at events like the Victor Oladipo Skills Academy and on the Adidas Gauntlet circuit where he played alongside five-star shooting guard Romeo Langford. In those venues, Hayes caught the attention of coaches for his size, fluid athleticism, soft hands and touch around the rim. He also showed promise as a shot blocker.

Now, the pressure will be on for Hayes to realize his potential but he's one that will be watched closely for the final 2018 rankings and he's certainly one that Texas feels like they've pulled a bit of a recruiting coup on.

Hayes joins four-star wing Gerald Liddell and three-star combo forward Brock Cunningham in Texas' 2018 recruiting class.