McD A-A: P.J. Hairston Spotlight

CHICAGO --- Throughout his high school career P.J. Hairston has dominated the competition. But it was his enhanced development and focus over the last year that earned him a trip to the prestigious McDonald's All-American Game.

"It's fun," he said of the event. "I'm out here with all of the best players in the country. Coming out and being able to show all of my talents to the world and I think all of us deserve to be out here. We all worked hard to be in this position."

Hairston, who transferred to of Chatham (Va.) Hargrave Military Academy from Greensboro (N.C.) Dudley following his junior season, spent plenty of time this past year getting his body in shape and working on different faces of his game.

When asked specifically about making the game, Hairston said it means he accomplished exactly what he had set out to do.

"It means that I did my job this year," he said. "I played hard and I was a team player and just got the job done. The reason I'm here is because I deserved it. I had to work hard for it."

Joining Hairston as a McDonald's All-American is classmate James McAdoo. The two are roommates for the event. Hairston said over the past year and a half he and McAdoo have developed a strong bond.

"We are real close," Hairston said. "Ever since we both signed we got closer. Before we signed we weren't as close as we are now, knowing that we are going in this summer together and we'll start hanging out a lot."

Hairston and McAdoo will both play on the East squad and they've practiced the past two days together. What does Hairston see in McAdoo's game?

"He's a great player," the 6-foot-5 shooting guard said about his future teammate. "He's very versatile. He can do anything. He can shoot the ball. He's athletic and he can finish at the rim. He's a hard worker."

Being an early commitment, Hairston has been a member of the Carolina family for quite some time. But college is moving closer and closer and Hairston said his excitement is mounting.

"I'm real excited," he exclaimed. "Just being there and knowing all the famous people that have gone through Carolina is exciting."

The five-star prospect said he's hoping to see the court early on in his career.

"I'm just going to try to score and get my teammates involved," he said. "When I get the ball I'm going to look for my teammates and just play hard as usual. I'm going to come out and play hard as a freshman and that's how you get minutes."

After an Elite Eight finish this season with a squad dominated by underclassmen, Hairston has his eyes set on a better finish next season.

"If nobody leaves I see us winning a national championship next year," Hairston said.

Hairston and McAdoo will take the court at the United Center on Wednesday. The game tips off at 10:00 ET on ESPN.

P.J. Hairston Profile

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