Hawes Bucks the Trend

Top prospects in the Class of 2006 seem to be on the fast track of early decisions. Commitments are popping each week, but is it right for the player and the program? Spencer Hawes doesn't think so, and he's looking forward to his full fall slate of official visits.

Spencer Hawes, Scout.com's No. 7 prospect in the Class of 2006, could pick any college he wants to attend - pick up the phone and basically commit. For a 6-foot-11 guy from Seattle Prep who runs the floor and can score with each hand around the basket, it would be that easy.

However, Hawes isn't like other members of his class. He's not even close to being ready to make a decision.

"I don't know enough about the school and the places to say "yes" or "no" to anyone," Hawes said. "It's one of the biggest decisions of your life. You can't expect a 16 or 17 year old to decide that early."

And Hawes won't.

Currently, he's got a lengthy list that includes Washington, Connecticut, Duke, North Carolina, Arizona, Kansas, UCLA and Stanford. Stanford and Duke have not offered but he is filling out the essay part of his Stanford application so he's engrossed in the process of applying for admission to Stanford.

Hawes said that he won't succumb to making a decision based on someone else's timetable. "It's a domino effect. Once one goes, it kind of sets it off. I find that very strange."

"There's a lot of pressure on a kid when coaches tell you ‘we're going on you and someone else.' "

So, where is Hawes in the process? That's easy; he's in the information gathering stage of the whole deal. "It's my responsibility to find out all I can," Hawes said.

The next time he really gets to find out about colleges could come after the July evaluation period. Hawes is thinking about a working vacation which would include some unofficial visits. "Possibly up the East Coast, but it's not that far in the process," Hawes said. "It would be a nice little trip."

Could a kid from Seattle really leave the area with the hoops rebirth that the Huskies are experiencing? Wouldn't it be hard to leave the West Coast? "That's something, going away, that's part of the experience … growing up," Hawes said. "It would be difficult but it wouldn't make or break the situation."

For now, Hawes is focusing on ball with the summer goal of narrowing his choices so he can hit the fall visit trail. "I want to try some unofficial visits once the July period ends. It'll give me a better idea of what I want to do in the fall with the official visits."

Hawes will be getting plenty of attention come September. At this rate, he'll be one of the only guys left but he's committed to doing it his way, learning about the schools and going through the process and you can't blame him for taking that approach. After all, the system was originally intended to work this way, we've just been slowly turning up the recruiting calendar each year.

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