Jarrod Uthoff felt relief. Trimming his list of prospective schools from 11 to six proved difficult.
"I didn't know how hard it was going to be, telling colleges no," the Class of 2011 Forward said. "It was one of the toughest things I've ever had to do. They were all good about it."
The Cedar Rapids, Iowa product announced on Tuesday that Iowa, Iowa State, Wisconsin, Illinois, Northern Iowa and Butler were his finalists. Schools like Arizona State, Indiana and Creighton were told they were out of the picture.
The versatile, 6-foot-9, 200-pound Uthoff has risen up the recruiting charts this spring and summer. He and his Iowa Barnstormer AAU teammates were scheduled to compete at big tournaments in Milwaukee, Chicago and Las Vegas this month.
"All of the schools are even right now," Uthoff said of his final six. "I hope to have a decision in the next couple of weeks. It's going to be hard.
"I'll sit down with my family, talk it out and see what feels like the best spot for me."
Uthoff said that a common theme runs through the programs in his final six.
"All of the schools have great coaching staffs with great people," the Jefferson High senior-to-be said. "That's why they're my top choices. It‘s going to be hard to choose between them."
Here's what Uthoff said about each finalist:
IOWA - It's 25 minutes from my house. I called Coach (Fran) McCaffery (Tuesday) to tell him but he wasn't around. I spoke with Coach (Kirk) Speraw. He was pretty excited.
WISCONSIN - It's a great campus. I think their style of play fits me. Coach Bo Ryan also was excited when I told him. He said he hopes they make the final cut.
IOWA STATE - It's not too far from home. I like the style they'll be playing under Coach (Fred) Hoiberg.
NORTHERN IOWA - It's also close to home; only an hour away. It's a good program.
BUTLER - They're not as close to home, but it's a great coaching staff and I know I'd fit in well there.
ILLINOIS - It's another really good program that I know I'd fit it well with.
Stay with Hawkeyeinsider.com for the latest on Uthoff's final decision.