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Film Room: Breaking down Arizona cornerback commit Isaiah Hayes

With the current state of the corners, Isaiah Hayes could see the field as a true freshman

In the 2016 recruiting class thus far, the Arizona Wildcats have secured one cornerback, 3-star Isaiah Hayes out of Calabasas High School. The 6-0 175lb California corner is ranked 70th at his position, and 73rd overall in his state.

He comes from a football family,. His father is Chris Hayes, who was a 10-year defensive back in the NFL out of Washington State, and was a member of the 1996 Green Bay Packers Super Bowl team. His brother, Chris Hayes Jr., is a redshirt sophomore defensive back at Oregon State as well.

At Calabasas High, his team is currently 11-1, and they're just one win away from heading into the CIF Western Division Championship Game. In 12 games this season, he's racked up 85 tackles, nine of which for loss, averaging just over seven tackles a game. He's also picked off the ball four times, forced one fumble, and deflected 16 passes this season.

Those pass deflections are key. When watching Isaiah Hayes, he has the ability to play the ball extremely well in the air. He always seems to get his head turned away as the quarterback throws the ball, and is able to get at least a touch on the ball to deflect it out of the way.

With that in mind, it gives me the idea that he's better in zone coverage, and might even be able to play free safety with Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles.

You can see his ability to play the ball early on, as this is a common occurrence through his highlights. There are some solid plays at about 1:35 and 1:50 to watch the full play.

He's not the fastest corner around, but he has the strength to bump guys off their routes and throw off the timing of some plays in given situations. While he was playing off his man at the line of scrimmage, you can see he uses his body a lot of the times to dictate where the receiver runs his route.


He seems to play well in the run game as well, able to close in on the ball carrier. There are a few plays where he is able to shed the block and get into the backfield or contain the edge. At 3:15 you can see his run support, and at 4:08 you can see his closing speed.

With all the young depth at corner, there's no telling how soon Hayes might see the field. But this year, Arizona was playing two true freshmen at corner in Sammy Morrison and Jace Whittaker, so the need and opportunity for Hayes to play early is certainly there.