"If they want to put more muscle on me, I'm going to be ready for whatever they've got planned for me," the UW signee told Dawgman.com this past weekend during May Madness, the camp/7-7 tournament sponsored by Ford Sports Performance. "If it's getting bigger, I'll get bigger. If they want me to lift more, just get more muscle? I'll do it. Whatever they want me to do."
It hasn't been that long since we first saw Gaye at a Barton Training camp after his freshman year at E-W, but even then you could see glimpses of the player he has become.
"If you had asked me a while ago I would have said it's taken forever," Gaye said when asked about the recruiting process. "But right now? I would say it went by really fast because I didn't expect to be where I'm at right now. Going to all those camps got me prepared to be where I'm at right now and has built me up experience-wise. It went by fast and I'm thankful I went to all those camps and got the opportunity to meet all the guys that set me up to get me ready to be where I'm at right now."
Gaye wasn't participating in May Madness due to a previous shoulder injury that was corrected at the beginning of the year.
"I got an injury during basketball season junior year but I didn't get surgery until three moths ago," he said. "I'm going through rehab, getting my shoulder healthy. I may not be with (UW) this summer, just because I need to take care of me first, so I'll be with them later on."
Gaye added that when he gets to Montlake, he is probably going to start out as a defensive end, but with some 3-technique sprinkled in depending on the situation. "I might be showing up as a linebacker too, standing up," he said.
But the decision to greyshirt - delay enrollment - hasn't be made yet. "We're talking about January, but we're also talking about coming in for LEAP and also they'll take care of my shoulder," Gaye said. "It's undecided right now. I'm just waiting on what they've got planned for me this summer, not really sure what we're going to do yet.
"I would like to see whatever's best for me and not really rush things because I need to get healthy. They want me there ready to go. They don't want me on and off, taking time off. They want me to be 100 percent."
Gaye has three more months of rehabilitation to go on his shoulder and after that a decision will be made. "They'll see if I need to get back on the field, then they'll go from there," he said.
But right now it appears Gaye will likely delay enrollment until January 'at the latest'. In the meantime, he's keeping tabs on the situation with his future position coach at Washington.
"Me and coach (Ikaika) Malloe are really close," he said. "We text and talk. He's talking to me about how school is going. I know the year is almost here so we'll be visiting and I'm going to be there at their practices and talk about game planning. I won't be practicing with them but I can watch so we can stay in touch, communicate, keep things updated and see how things go from there.
"It's going to be a big summer for me. I'm not going to do anything except getting ready for what's happening and getting healthy. There's no off-season for me. It's just the beginning of something new."
Being at May Madness was just another opportunity for Gaye to connect with his future teammates. Joe Tryon, Hunter Bryant and Salvon Ahmed were also on hand to check out the camp. "If it wasn't for the recruiting process and going to all these camps, I wouldn't know who Joe or Hunter or Salvon, I wouldn't know any of these guys," said Gaye. "The recruiting process gave me an opportunity to meet these guys and build relationships with them."