"I think Arizona is at the top of my list, and Iowa State would probably be number two right now," said Hawes, who has run a 4.9 40 time. "They both seem like they need someone like me to go in and play. Both teams have stressed the fact that they need a player like me to come in and take a leadership role and play right away. That's what I'm looking to do. I don't want to be sitting on the bench somewhere. I want to be going somewhere I can get playing time."
Hawes says he has already scheduled an official visit to Arizona for the weekend of Oct. 23-24. He'll then trip to Missouri immediately following his season at Yuba. A stop at ISU should come during the month of December, he says.
Since the Yuba College sophomore won't be signing at mid-term, he's in favor of exploring all of his opportunities and making a decision later in the process.
"I'm going to take all of my officials, and then based on what I see on those trips I'm going to decide from there," he said. "I'm going to be coming out in spring so I've got plenty of time to decide. I'll be signing in February."
For someone who didn't get much attention from Division I programs out of nearby Wheatland High School, Hawes is now excited about his potential for playing at the next level. That has prompted him to work on his game even more.
"I didn't get recruited at all out of high school," he said. "It was not stressed to me as much as it probably should have been that I could play at the next level. I didn't really take that into consideration at all until it came time to graduate. I started talking to some junior college coaches around here and decided to go to Yuba.
"This is a dream come true for me, obviously," he said. "This is something I've always wanted to happen, but didn't think it ever would. I've improved a whole bunch since high school. The coaching is a lot better out here than it ever was in high school. I was a two-way starter in high school, and I'm just playing offense now. I've gotten a whole lot more time to focus on offensive techniques."
Cyclone assistant coach Mike Nelson joined Hawes' recruiting fray during the offseason and, along with the help of some others on Dan McCarney's staff, have put ISU in position to land the tackle prospect.
"Coach Nelson is the one who's been recruiting me and he seems like a good guy," Hawes said. "I've talked to Coach Cotton on the phone a little bit and he seems like a good guy. I like all of the coaches that I've talked to from Iowa State. They told me I have a real good shot of going in there and earning a scholarship. They need someone to come in and block for them."