With the class of 2005 all but put to bed, it's time to look ahead to the top players in the class of 2006. Our early season pick as the top prospect in the Northwest as well as a top five overall player in the West region is Seattle (Wash.) O'Dea standout Taylor Mays.
Mays, 6-3, 215 pounds is an incredible athlete and could play three positions in college. As a sophomore, he won the state 100m and 200m and is favored to do so again this year. Mays was at the Nike Camp in Oregon last year and showed incredible potential as a future cove corner although he probably projects best as a free safety. He could also play receiver at the next level but again, the defensive side of the ball is where we really like him.
As a junior, Mays earned all-league honors on both sides of the ball after catching 25 balls for 514 yards and seven touchdowns at receiver to go along with five interceptions on defense. Mays also returned three punts for scores and his combination of size, speed and skill are unlike any player in the region.
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"I have five offers right now," Mays said. "Washington, Washington State, Duke, Michigan and Notre Dame. I'm also hearing from Nebraska, UCLA, USC, Miami and Penn State. Miami is probably my top school followed by Michigan, USC, Notre Dame and Washington. I'm looking for a school with a strong football tradition and also a school with a nice combination of athletics and academics."
Mays father Stafford is a Washington alum and played for the Huskies so it will be interesting to see what kind of role that plays in his recruitment. The athlete is solid academically as well carrying a 3.5 GPA and with a 1200 on the SAT. He'll attend the Nike Camp at Stanford this Spring.