Jaxson Hayes: Background
Background bullet points:
Hometown: Norman, Oklahoma
JUST LIKE: Trae Young, Zac Taylor (head coach of Cincinnati Bengals), Hoda Kotb (journalist), James Garner (actor), Elizabeth Warren (Senator)
Hayes was born in Norman while both of his parents were coaches at the University of Oklahoma
High School: Moeller (OH)
JUST LIKE: Ken Griffey Jr., John Boehner (Congressman), Byron Larkin (basketball at Xavier)
Sports is in his blood
Hayes’ father is Jonathan Hayes, a former NFL player who currently holds the position of tight ends coach with the Cincinnati Bengals
His mother, Kristi Hayes, played basketball at Drake University and was the Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year as a senior (‘95). In high school his mother averaged 52 points as a senior.
As a freshman Hayes stood six feet tall. By the time he was a senior he was 6’11”
Prior to this season he had a bone scan that suggested he has another growth spurt still to come
Cleats for Sneakers
A high school football player, Jaxson Hayes was all-but-forced to focus exclusively on basketball as his body continued to grow. At 6’7” he was getting hurt as opponents “were going at my knees and back and stuff.” He dropped everything but basketball and his career took off.
In Hayes’ first AAU tournament game he was guarding the basket when another player launched himself up for a dunk. Hayes leapt with him and pinned the dunk attempt against the backboard. That player? Zion Williamson.
Hayes’ mother said that moment was a turning point for her son. “Suddenly,” she said “everyone was talking about Jaxson.”
In contrast to most top prospects, Hayes did not start a game in high school until he was a senior. He also was not a top-100 recruit with most recruiting services.
His first offer was from Middle Tennessee State. After that summer 1 offer turned into 42. He was sitting in English class when Patrick Ewing just showed up on campus with the Georgetown coaching staff to meet him.