"I had a great time at Mississippi State," C.J. Hayes said. "I got to meet all of the coaches and talk with some of the players. I enjoyed getting to meet everybody. I talked some with Coach (Dan) Mullen and just got the chance to talk with everybody."
The trip to Starkville was a first for Hayes, but the 6-2, 200 pounder is familiar with the Bulldogs of the SEC Western Division.
"The first college football game I ever attended was a Mississippi State game when they played in Nashville," Hayes said. "I have sort of kept up with them since then. They have been recruiting me and they invited me down to the game, so we decided to go check it out.
"I really enjoyed the game and I was impressed with how the fans supported the team. It was a great atmosphere."
Hayes holds nearly 20 scholarship offers and is currently committed to Purdue. Due to the coaching change with the Boilermakers, Hayes is keeping his recruiting options open. The talented wide out plans to take in some official visits before making a final decision.
"I am going to visit Purdue obviously and then probably Mississippi State and Kentucky," Hayes said. "I am still being recruited by a lot of schools, but Purdue and Mississippi State are really the main ones right now.'
While the Bulldogs are one of the main suitors at this point, Coach Dan Mullen and his staff have not extended an offer to the Blue Grass State standout. That could change in the coming days.
"Mississippi State hasn't offered me yet, but that are talking about it," Hayes said. "I am supposed to call them next Wednesday and we are supposed to talk about things some more. I am interested to hear what they have to say. I would like to take another visit down there and have a chance to see everything else."
The Bulldogs are looking to add some talent at the wide receiver position and are expected to take another quality pass catcher in this class. With in staters Austin Williams and Monterio Hunt already in the State fold, the State staff can afford to be patient as they consider their options for that remaining spot in the 2017 signing class.
Hayes led South Warren to a 9-5 record this fall. The season ended in the third round of the Kentucky State playoffs with a 33-16 loss to Franklin-Simpson. With his high school career now complete, Hayes has some thinking to do about the next step in his playing career.