Hayes, 6-foot-4, 240-pounds, had a tremendous junior season, and is one of the top defensive end prospects in the Midwest. He discussed his commitment to Ohio State, and why there was no reason to wait for other offers.
"I've always wanted to go to Ohio State, ever since I could remember," Hayes said of his early commitment. "I've had no second thoughts at all about committing that soon, because I'm all Buckeye, and always will be."
"As long as I've been following sports, I've thought about playing football for Ohio State," he stated. "Once I met Coach (Jim) Tressel, it made me want to go there even more. I think so much of all the Ohio State coaches, and they're all great guys."
Ohio State currently has two commits for the 2011 class, Hayes and Canton McKinley's Steve Miller, and the Buckeyes are hoping both become designated recruiters, to help attract future teammates.
"Actually, I've been talking to DerJuan Gambrell, Trey DePriest, Doran Grant and Chase Farris a lot," he said. "I think we're going to get all four guys at Ohio State. I'm trying to do all I can to help put together a great class, and I think we're doing great so far."
Hayes was a fixture at nearly every Ohio State home game in 2009, and he spoke of his experiences in Columbus on game day.
"The USC game sticks out the most to me, because that was such a great atmosphere," he stressed. "I got to meet Greg Oden, and a lot of other former Buckeye players. Those types of games are exactly why I'm coming to Ohio State, and I look forward to playing on the biggest stage in college football. Every home game is a great time at Ohio State."
The Ohio State defense, under coordinator Jim Heacock, has been among the finest in the country for years, a fact not lost on Hayes.
"I talk to Coach Heacock a lot, and he's always keeping after me to work hard and keep my grades up," Hayes admitted. "We have a great relationship, as I do with (assistant coach) "Doc" Tressel. I love the style of defense Ohio State runs, and I'm looking forward to playing in that system. A lot of people compare me to Cam Heyward, but I'm a lot smaller than he is, but I'm faster (laughing)."
Even though he has his scholarship in the bag, and his future is set at Ohio State, Hayes knows he has a lot to work on to be a better football player.
"I want to work on my speed, and getting bigger and stronger," Hayes stated. "I also need to watch more film, to increase my knowledge of the game. I think my strength is coming off the edge, using my raw speed to find the football. I think I can get a lot better, and I'm pushing myself hard to improve."
We will have updated film on Kenny Hayes up on the site soon. We will have more stories coming from this area, with Bill Greene and Allen Trieu, from their Toledo Tour.