Mays getting close to a decision

Playmakers can make or break a program. The lack of playmakers for the Washington Huskies last year showed itself during a 1-10 season. One local playmaker who is getting plenty of attention from the hometown school as well as the rest of the country is O'Dea S/WR Taylor Mays. Dawgman.com got in touch with Mays and he gave us his thoughts on recruiting, the Huskies most recent verbal commitment and his upcoming football season.

"We go out and catch footballs, run routes, backpedal and we do all kinds of stuff," Mays said on Monday afternoon when asked about his summer regimen. "Mike Webber throws to us a lot. He's got a great arm. He's a Division One baseball player. He throws the ball well and he runs the ball pretty well too. He's got some stuff behind his passes."

A majority of Mays' offseason has been spent rehabbing the pulled hamstring he suffered during track season. "I pulled my hamstring, so I did a lot of physical therapy," Mays said. "I actually took a yoga class, but now it feels good. I can move 100% on it.

"It was tough, but at the same time it tested my patience. That was good for me and it helped make me stronger."

When the conversation turned to recruiting, his first recollection was from his recent visit to Ann Arbor, Michigan. "I loved the ‘Big House'," Mays said.

So you liked the campus a lot?

"No, I liked the ‘Big House'," Mays said in reference to Michigan's stadium. "That place is huge. It's crazy to think about over 100,000 people in there. I also liked the atmosphere, campus and coaches a lot, but that stadium is impressive."

Washington recruiting coordinator and linebackers coach Chris Tormey has had the most contact with Mays from the Huskies staff. "He's really cool. I like coach Tormey. We get along real well," Mays said. "I feel like I'd be very coachable under him so we kind of relate to each other."

One of the most common trains of thought regarding Mays' final destination was that his family ties to Washington (His father, Stafford, and uncle, Shell, both played for UW) could be the deciding factor, but the younger Mays said his father isn't really influencing him one way or the other.

"(My dad) just lets me do my own thing," Mays said matter-of-factly. "He gives me guidance obviously, but at the same time he kind of just lets me do my own thing and if he thinks I'm doing something wrong he'll correct me on it."

Being the standout athlete Mays is, it stands to reason he could make an impact on either offense or defense, but Mays knows which side of the ball he wants to play on. "I'm playing defense," Mays said. "I like playing defense. Defense is about attitude and I like to play with attitude. I just like how on defense you have to play together. On offense you have to play together too, but I've just always been attracted to defense."

Mays and his Irish teammates could meet up with either Steve Schilling's Bellevue squad or Jake Locker's Ferndale team in the playoffs this fall, a match-up all would relish. Mays considers both Schilling and Locker to be great guys, but all that gets thrown out the window come kickoff. He lights up when thinking about blitzes, blind-sides and burying his opponent. "I'm going to try and take his head off," he says, laughingly when asked about going up against Locker. Just the thought of football around the corner brings a huge smile to Mays' face.

"There's no time for friendships, because I want to win. I'm going for the win. I'm not trying to play dirty or anything, but I'm going to go as hard as I can."

But Taylor knows that Locker isn't going to play favorites either when he's roaming the middle for Ferndale on defense. "I hope he's going to try to knock me out," Mays said. "I'm going to bring it, but I know he's going to bring it too."

Mays said he recently heard about Locker's recent commitment to the Huskies, but has yet to speak with the athlete from up north. "I think Jake's a great player," Mays said. "I think he's a key commitment for coach Willingham in terms of other offensive recruits are going to want to come based on him because he's a quarterback."

Mays said a decision would be coming down in the next few weeks and definitely plans to commit before the start of his football season. O'Dea kicks off the season on September 2nd in Olympia when they face the loaded Capital Cougars.

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