The budding South Jersey superstar visited with teammates to meet with the Rutgers staff and enjoy a sold-out basketball game against No. 20 Ohio State.
“It was very, very, very, very good because we had a lot of 1-on-1 time with just the Camden crew,” Hawkins said. “It wasn’t like a junior day with 100 people there. It was very nice to have all of the attention on us.”
Hawkins checks in at 6-foot-2, 185 pounds and is No. 2 at his position in Scout’s New Jersey rankings. With schools recruiting him as both a cornerback and receiver, Rutgers likes him on offense where it plans to take two more in the 2016 class, Hawkins said.
“I just want to play, I don’t care about offense or defense,” Hawkins said. “ … Coach McDaniels is a very cool guy. We watched a little bit of film. He taught me how to break routes, and a couple of plays in their pro-style.”
McDaniels, who coaches receivers and will be in the conversation to replace offensive coordinator Ralph Friedgen, spent the most time with Hawkins during his visit.
Star receiver Leonte Carroo, who attended the game and performed with teammates and the Rutgers dance team at halftime, also greeted Hawkins warmly.
“We didn’t talk much, but for the few seconds that we talked it was clear he was a cool guy,” Hawkins said. “He said I should hit him up on Facebook or Twitter and that I could talk to him any time.”
“I expected [the attention] for our school because we’re all from the state,” Hawkins said. “They’re trying to get all of their best players to stay home. It was very cool that they’re keeping in contact with all of us and inviting us for all of their visits.”
Hawkins, a Philadelphia 76ers fan, added that he would love to see the team draft Russell, who put up a triple double for Ohio State in front of 8,000 fans at the RAC.
Hawkins has no plans for a decision with plenty of visits expected in the winter and spring.