Commitment Impact - Ali Gaye

The Huskies added their 16th commitment for the 2017 class and it was a big one, literally. Here's how we think that Edmonds (Wa.) Woodway DL Ali Gaye impacts things once he sets foot on campus this summer...

What to like

The first thing you notice with Gaye is his size. At 6'6" and 275 pounds, Gaye is a long-levered athlete who is just now starting to tap into his potential. Throw in his work-ethic and the fact that he's a very good athlete and you have makings of a player who could be a force after a few years in the program.

Ali Gaye 2016 Senior Highlights

What needs work

This basically goes toward our point on what was to like -- Gaye is still a very raw prospect. His upside is off-the-charts, but at this point, Gaye hasn't been the dominant force you'd expect someone with his size and talent to be at the high school level. Some of that is his quiet, reserved nature, but there are plenty of top football players with those traits, so you can attribute some of it to his unrefined technique. Gaye has a good motor, but if the Husky coaches can get him to amp things up even further, he could be a devastating player along the Husky defensive front.

Where he fits 

Some think that the offer for Gaye came because the Huskies were expecting to lose Marlon Tuipulotu to USC, but that isn't the case. The coaching staff had been watching Gaye for quite some time and they spent a lot of time getting to know him, keeping track of his academics and how he improved as a prospect. Once he arrives, Gaye will be thrown into the mix along the defensive line, most likely at one of the defensive end spots where his size, long arms and strength will absolutely be a plus in holding the edge against the run. We'd be shocked if he played right away since he would definitely benefit from a redshirt season where he could add more strength and get used to the speed of the game as well as the academic requirements that are put on college students. 

How he impacts 2017 class

In the short term, Gaye is the only true defensive line commitment in the class. His friend and future teammate, Joe Tryon, could also wind up growing into a defensive linemen, but at this point in time, he's projected to be a BUCK linebacker. 

The Bottom Line

With the loss of Tuipulotu, Gaye was important, but, like we said, he would have been offered even if Tuipulotu had stuck by his pledge. 

With his size and athleticism, Gaye could wind up being one of the steals of the 2017 class, but fans need to temper their expectations for him, at least early on. 

Gaye has a ton of work to do, both in the weight room and in technique, but the nice thing is, the Huskies don't need him to play right away and that will allow him to work his way into the rotation in two years and be an impact player along the defensive front in his third, fourth and fifth years in the program.

Keeping the local talent home is always a plus and when you have a player with Gaye's upside, that makes it all the better. Top Stories