Wisconsin Still in for Hayes?

Many figured that once Ohio State offered three-star Toledo (Oh) Whitmer forward Nigel Hayes, his recruitment would be over, considering he grew up a Buckeyes fan. Does Wisconsin still have a chance?

MADISON - The state of Ohio produces some of the best talent on the hardwood and Wisconsin is right in the mix for Toledo (OH) Whitmer senior power forward Nigel Hayes.

Wisconsin joined the mix with Hayes (6-7, 235 pounds) in late June after watching him compete in Mequon with the AAU All-Ohio Red and spent the month of July having a presence in the stands.

Like most prospects that hit the camp circuit, many get noticed much more and the Badgers happen to be one of those schools watching closely. Not only is Wisconsin showing they mean business in his recruitment, but they want to also let it be known that they feel very passionate to see him in Madison.

"They have been watching me and it makes me feel good, like it would any kid to see a coach at your game watching you," Hayes told Badger Nation. "As for my feelings, I feel really good about them because they've been in contact with me the most and are pushing for me the hardest. They basically love me."

That love connection he is feeling from the Badgers is coming from his growing relationship with the Wisconsin staff; a connection he hopes will improve when he takes an unofficial visit the weekend of September 1 to visit the campus, talk to the coaches and see the football team's opener. "My relationship has grown with Wisconsin," said Hayes. "It's become really good. The phone calls and texts are more easy going and friendly."

While he knows who is really hitting the recruiting on him, Hayes – rated a three-star prospect by Scout.com - still has many others to consider. One school that he grew fond of is just right in his backyard, as Ohio State extended him an offer August 1. However, getting an offer from his childhood favorite doesn't mean Hayes will speed up a decision.

"Some of my offers involve Wisconsin, Minnesota, Stanford, Dayton and Ohio State," said Hayes. "It was really big on getting the Ohio State offer because I've always wanted to go there. Ohio State was one of my favorite schools growing up, (but) it will not speed up my time frame though."

Where does everyone stack up now since he got that Buckeye offer? That will not be all set until he visits some schools he has in mind.

"It's hard to tell right now," Hayes admitted. "I will just take my visits (and) then decide. I want to visit Stanford, Wisconsin, Ohio State, Minnesota and Dayton."

Regarding Hayes's game, it is no secret on how he looks at it and it comes in one word.

"Versatile," he said. "It can improve by fine tuning areas such as dribbling and shooting."

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