Motherwell's promising Geordie central defender failed to unearth any authentic traces of tartan a few years back when he was asked to scour his heritage in order to establish his suitability for Scotland's Under-21 side, but even that hasn't made the issue go away.
While the player's potential and Scotland's desperation for alluring options in that position are reasons for that, what has really given the issue currency is the FA's apparent change of stance over Manchester United's Kosovan-Albanian born Adnan Januzaj, which indicates England may be prepared to rip up the so-called gentleman's agreement between the home nations not to use simple Fifa residency criteria as a basis for selection. On these grounds, any previously uncapped player would become eligible for inclusion after a minimum of three years of living in a country and Hutchinson, part of the furniture of Scottish football for six seasons already, would then become fair game.
"People say 'would you play for Scotland?' and I don't really know unless I was asked the question," the player said. "I got asked by the Under-21s if I had a Scottish grandmother or anything like that, but I don't. I have been up here so long I feel as if I am starting to know this place better than I know my home and all the lads say I am Scottish now anyway. I know there's a Hutchinson kilt but that's about it."
For now, however, the idea of the player following his namesake Don, a fellow native of Tyne and Wear, into Scotland colours is something of a sideshow compared to the intrigue over the player's prospects at club level. Ever since national team assistant Mark McGhee lured him north in 2007, the Lanarkshire club has provided a home from home for this product of the illustrious Wallsend Boys Club in Tyneside which also helped develop Peter Beardsley, Alan Shearer, Michael Carrick and Alan Thompson.
But it remains uncertain whether the 22-year-old will be at the club beyond next summer, when his contract is due to expire, or indeed even as long as that. Manager Stuart McCall commenced talks over a two-year extension last week with Hutchinson, but if no deal is agreed before January they may have to trade him elsewhere rather than risk losing him for nothing.
"He is a throwback to the old centre-halves who wanted to defend," said McCall. "Don't get me wrong, he's actually quite comfortable on the ball but he wants to head and tackle. He can be rash and that's the part of the game he has to learn - he can't win every ball. Scouts have been to watch him over the last couple of years and as I say to him, they won't mark down all the decent things he has done; if he makes an error that is what will stay in their mind."
There is no shortage of precedent when McCall considers those who may have moved on too early. Not least the man who will turn up on Scottish Communities League Cup business against his old club in midweek, Mark Reynolds.
"His [Hutchinson's] agent and advisors will be saying it's time to move on but I genuinely don't think it is yet," McCall said. "I think Shaun should look at the bigger picture, for example Jamie Murphy has gone to Sheffield United and is not playing at the moment. Tom Hateley went three, four months without a club. Jenno [Steve Jennings] has just signed for Tranmere. Mark Reynolds is another one. I had just joined the club that January and Mark had six months left on his contract. The club needed to get some money for him so he went to Sheffield Wednesday. Obviously he is now doing well at Aberdeen but he never played at Wednesday.
"Shaun is still not the finished article and I feel it would be better for his development to extend his stay here. If we get him tied up for, say, two years, he could still go at the end of the season. It just gives us that security. I spoke to him in the summer and he just wanted to get into the season, with the European games coming up so we left him alone. But now is the time to sit down with him. He is still only a young lad, we don't want to mess up his mind. But he knows that if the club gets a reasonable offer he will move on."
Hutchinson, who arrived north of the border as a midfielder, doesn't sound likely to agitate for a move.
"I was a midfielder as a boy and it wasn't really going my way," he said. "It was a mix of Scott Leitch, Mark McGhee and Gordon Young who decided that defence could be my best position. I played in a reserve game and it felt natural. The rest is history and it's taken me to here. This is a welcoming club and it gets better for me every year. I've been at the club for six years and I don't see why I couldn't extend that stay longer. I've never once thought about leaving."
This reshaped Motherwell side have won six of their last eight matches and are still unsure of how good they can be. More will be known after a four-day period which pits them against St Johnstone in Perth today, then the League Cup eliminator with Aberdeen in midweek. The latter match can be filed under unfinished business, with Aberdeen having won at Fir Park in the Scottish Cup in each of the last two seasons, and prevailed in the league encounter this season.
"It's wide open for everybody now," said Hutchinson, a veteran of the Scottish Cup final as a callow 19-year-old. "If anything, it makes this game on Wednesday even more important because there's an argument that these two teams are the favourites to go on and win it."