Away from the field, Austin Hall is as polite as offensive linemen come. The Phoenix (Ariz.) Brophy Prep tackle is a gifted conversationalist. He's outgoing and engaging. He throws around the word "sir." Stanford doesn't care about any of that, though. It wants the opposite. It wants his darker side.
Stanford coaches have asked Hall to be as mean as humanly possible when he shows up in Palo Alto for the Cardinal's team camp on Wednesday. And with a scholarship offer on the line, the 295-pound lineman is happy to oblige.
He doesn't plan on issuing any apologies after he's finished, either.
"My goal is to get an offer at camp on Wednesday," Hall said. "That's why I'm going. They pretty much told me they want me to be nasty and have that nasty streak they're looking for. They say, 'you have what it takes, but we want that nasty streak to come out of you at camp.' So I was like, 'fine. You want to see it? I'll bring it.'"
Should an offer from Stanford materialize, it's possible that Hall's recruitment could change course. In his mind, Stanford is not just another school. And the offer, while it would be his ninth, is not just another offer.
"I'm very interested in them," Hall said. "It's just because Stanford has all the tools to set me up later on in life. You get that education and you play major football, which you don't get from Ivy Leagues. That's why it appeals so much to me."
For now, though, there's no Stanford offer on the table. For now, Hall holds just eight invitations. He also has one team that stands out from the rest. As things stand now, the three-star prospect is seriously considering staying close to his Phoenix-based home for college.
"Definitely Arizona State is standing out," Hall said. "At first I thought, 'there's no way I'm staying in state. I need to leave the heat. I want to go do something new.' The more I got to know everything, it changed my mind. The people there are awesome, and what they have going on is definitely on the up - top 25 and whatnot."
According to Hall, Oregon State, UCLA and California could all be close to extending scholarship offers. He says the number of unofficial visits he takes will be limited because of the cost of travel. Official visits, on the other hand, are a different story. When it comes to those, he already has one campus in mind.
"From the places I have right now, I definitely want to go to Washington. I want to go check that out. Beside that, I don't really know the others ones I for sure want to see."
Hall says he'll wait until he can take a handful of official visits before choosing a school, making it unlikely that a verbal commitment will take place before his senior season at Brophy.