BEAVERTON, Ore.- The nation’s top overall prospect for the 2014 class, defensive end Da’Shawn Hand (Woodbridge, Va.) has been giving great effort to scaling back his recruitment and enjoying his final summer as a high school student.
Da'Shawn Hand says he will make a college decision "before December" at an announcement at his school.
“I closed my recruiting down,” Hand said. “My schools are Bama, Florida, Michigan, USC and LSU. My top three is Bama, Florida and Michigan. Those are the leaders and there’s no order among the three leaders. So other than that, I’ve just been chilling.”
As many have speculated, Hand doesn't plan to go the distance with a decision.
“Before December (I will make a decision),” Hand said. “It will be at my school. If TV wants to come to my school, that would be great, but I want to do it at my school in my auditorium and whoever wants to come can come.”
Michigan is the perceived frontrunner according to 247Sports Crystal Ball at 56 percent to the Tide’s 28 percent. Hand figures to visit the Wolverines officially for the Notre Dame game the first weekend in September.
The two SEC programs, however, are angling to get him on campus this month. He has never visited Florida and hasn’t been to Alabama since last summer. No plans have been finalized yet, but he could head to one of three destinations.
“Either Bama or Florida or LSU,” Hand said. “They all three are around the same weekend. I will only going to one (if any). I don’t know which yet. I just need to talk with my dad.”
Hand, who tweaked his hamstring and sat out most of the testing Monday, discussed why he wanted to scale back the recruiting process and take a break from it all together for a while. It was during some time spent with family that he made the call to disengage a bit.
“Time is moving too fast and I want to sit down and enjoy the moment,” Hand said. “You work so hard sometimes that you don’t realize how many awards you get. What I mean by that is this. My grandma has all of my awards in one room. That’s where I keep them. It got to the point where I was so focused on grinding that I wasn’t even worried about the awards, the ceremonies, the nice people you meet- everything. When I actually sat down- my grandma calls it taking a rest day- she was like look at this award this is nice and I was like when did I get this? It was an eye-opener.
“I never get content, though,” Hand said. “I still work hard. I still want to get my body better and get where I want to be.”
Hand will compete with the rest of the nation’s top prospects through Wednesday at The Opening.