Hale chooses Arizona

Bellflower (Calif.) cornerback Naijiel Hale announced on Tuesday that he will be playing his college ball at Arizona. Read on for some background and more on the commitment.

Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco cornerback Naijiel Hale took the opportunity at The Opening to announce that he has committed to Arizona.

The four-star corner saw his recruitment really heat up in March, as he named Arizona and Cal as his two favorites.

"California and Arizona are my top two schools now," Hale told Scout.com. "I sat down and looked at everything and I just really feel good about those two programs. I like the new coaches and the new direction at both programs. Cal has a new staff this year and Arizona is a year old and I like what both are saying right now.

"They're both starting out and want a new beginning and it would be fun to help turn those schools around. I really think and believe both schools are going to move in the right direction, they're bringing in something new and I feel really good about them."

The following month, Hale would visit Arizona and it solidified the Wildcats as one of his leaders.

"The Arizona visit was cool," he said. "I liked the campus and the coaches showed me a lot of love.

"They let me know that they really want me there and they think my skills fit in well in the secondary. They think I bring some versatility back there, which is important in their scheme."

Not much would change until early June, when Hale decided that he wanted to take his official visits and play out the recruiting process more.

"I want to take my time and make sure I'm doing the right thing," Hale said. "I don't want to rush in to anything because I only want do this one time. I don't want to commit somewhere, de-commit and then go through the process again.

"I'm going to talk things over with my mom and coaches and do at least two official visits during the season and the last three after the season. Even if I already committed somewhere, I still want to finish out my visits just for the experience."

Two weeks later, Hale completely changed course and decided that he wanted to end his recruitment.

"I'm going to commit at The Opening," Hale said. "I'm ready to do it. I know what I want to do and there is no need in putting this off any longer.

"One school has been recruiting me the hardest since day one. I'm at the top of their board and I'm positive it's where I want to play, so I'm going to get it done next week."

As it turns out, that school that Hale was positive about was Arizona, as the Wildcats secured their third four-star of the class and continue their momentum.


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