Hawes: 'It's On Another Level'

After a delayed flight returning home, Spencer Hawes made it back to Seattle Sunday night. Following a strong visit to North Carolina, just two more stops remain. He talks about his trip to Chapel Hill ...

The North Carolina Tar Heels had the weekend rigged for a good time. The school handed out national championship rings during a ceremony Saturday night and Roy Williams invited elite level talent to Chapel Hill for the celebration.

The centerpiece of UNC's visit was uncommitted senior Spencer Hawes, Scout.com's No. 3-ranked prospect in the Class of 2006. The Seattle Prep star is in the midst of a three-school tour and right out of the gate UNC made quite the impression.

"It was a real good visit," Hawes said Sunday night. "I got a feel for the campus and the guys and kind of just the whole atmosphere.

"The way they treat sports and especially basketball, it's on another level from what I've seen. It's the support that they get. The fan base just blew me away.

"Their football team is struggling a little bit but they kept supporting them. It was unique."

Hawes and his family packed plenty into the busy weekend. From touring the campus to meeting with coaches, it was non-stop, wall-to-wall action. He even managed to get in a run with the current Tar Heels.

"I played with them the first day," Hawes said. "It went well. They may have lost some but there's still a lot of talent left. I had never seen Thaddeus Young play and he looked good. (Tyler) Hansbrough is real good and (Wayne) Ellington played well. Quentin Thomas, I had never seen him play, but he looked pretty good too as a point guard."

With guard Wes Miller as his host, Hawes got to spend a ton of time with the players.

"I had a couple of meetings with academic people and coaches but other than that it was pretty much all with the guys."

Up next for Hawes are visits with Stanford and Washington. He's committed to going through this process and giving each program the chance UNC had. One thing is certain; Williams and Co. set the bar pretty high.

"I know (this visit) boosts Carolina," Hawes said. "I don't know how else to describe it. You can hear it from everyone but until you get there and experience it you can't really get a feel for it."

Still not wanting to name a leader, Hawes spoke highly of what he saw in Chapel Hill.

"I wouldn't say (UNC leads) but I'd definitely say they left a good impression."

Next up: Stanford in four days. Washington to follow.

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