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July 1, 2012Less than a day after saying publicly that he was starting to seriously think about reclassifying back to 2013, four-star point guard Devon Hall decided the time for thinking was over.
The Cape Henry Collegiate standout spent Saturday at the UVa's Elite Camp and late that night before heading back for Virginia Beach, he committed to Tony Bennett and the Cavaliers. It was a move that made himself, his family, and Virginia fans very happy in the process.
"It was just the perfect fit," Hall told CavsCorner on Sunday morning. "I was hoping to have the day to talk to the other schools that had recruited me and let them know but I'm glad to be a Virginia commit. I'm so happy."
His excitement was echoed by his father and high school coach Mark Hall, Sr., who said that his youngest son's decision to attend the same school as his older son, Mark, was a blessing.
"Devon made this decision for himself," the elder Hall explained. "This was on him. He's an old soul and he was going to do what was best for him. It's where he wanted to be and that's what it's about.
"We're definitely excited for Devon and we're excited to have both of our sons at the University of Virginia. It's a parent's dream come true."
At 6-foot-5, Hall is a big, physical guard who is as comfortable leading a team as most people are doing just about anything. In talking about his decision, he said there were several factors at play as to why the reclassification (young for his age, Hall moved to the 2014 class several years back) was the right move.
"I started in the 2013 class and moved to 2014 but over the last little bit, it's become clear to me that UVa really needed a point guard in this class and that was big for me," he said. "I wanted to be in the right situation and this is it."
His father said his older brother is Devon's "friendly nemesis," a description that made the newest member of UVa's program laugh.
"We're always competitive but this time, he gets to get a head start on me," Hall added. "He can show me the ropes now, lead me around a little bit."
In terms of the way he leads on the court, his father said Hall has become a point guard who is learning to use his size to his advantage. In short, he's ready for the next level.
"I think over the last year, over the last several months, he's improved in terms of his discipline, especially on the defensive end," Mark Hall, Sr. said. "His ball handling has improved, same with his consistency shooting the mid-range and 3-point shots. I'm very, very pleased with where he's come from as a player and I know that Coach Bennett is going to do a fantastic job with him once he gets there."
Bennett, as well as assistant coaches Ritchie McKay, Jason Williford, and Ron Sanchez, made UVa feel like home. That's another reason why Hall, the highest-rated commit at the point guard position since the current coaching staff has been in Charlottesville, will be a Wahoo.
"It was a great opportunity to play for a great school that needed a point guard and play for coaches that I really love," Hall said. "What Coach Bennett did in 2012 with guys like Mike Tobey and Evan Nolte and Justin Anderson, now me in 2013, and B.J. Stith in 2014, Virginia is definitely a program on the rise."
Stith, who also attended Elite Camp, said he was stunned to hear Hall had actually committed.
"He was messing with me all day," Stith recalled of Saturday's games. "And then during dinner, because we had been going against each other so much, he said something like 'Don't worry, I'm going to be your teammate soon.' I had no idea he was that serious. But I'm so excited. That kid is a headache to guard. He's so tough to guard. I've always had to play against him. Bout time we were on the same team. I can't wait."
Hall said that both Maryland and Florida State would've taken him in 2013. Along with those two schools, he also had offers in 2014 from Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Memphis, Miami, Oregon State, and Virginia Tech.
"I'm all in," he said of being committed in the 2013 class to UVa. "I can't wait to go from being the recruited guy to the one doing the recruiting. Feels good."
Added his father and coach, "He looked at it all and said, 'I'm ready.' And we're so proud of him."