Early Monday, the talented lineman ended his recruitment, giving his commitment to Jerry Kill and the Gophers. Mayes called the coaching staff after talking the decision over with his family.
"Today I just knew I was ready," he said. "I talked to my parents about it. I've been talking to them about it for a while and I just knew today was the day to get it done. So after workouts I went to my head coach's office and he was there, my family was there and then one of my best friends.
"We called coach [Matt] Limegrover. We called him and told him that I'm going to commit. He said ‘awesome' and was really excited. Then he turned the phone over to coach [Jerry] Kill. Me and Coach Kill talked for about 15 minutes and he just said he was excited to have me aboard and making sure that it's 100-percent where I wanted to be and I said, ‘Yes sir, this is where I want to spend the next four years of my life.' They said ‘good' and welcomed me to the Gopher family."
The Minnesota coaches weren't surprised by the commitment, but were extremely pleased from receiving a verbal from the top tackle on their board.
"My dad has been talking to me the past couple of days and has been hinting at it to Coach Limegrover," said Mayes. "They're excited, man. I don't know if they were surprised but they were really excited."
Mayes made the decision to be a Gopher but also considered two other schools for his future.
"In the end it came down to the top three, Colorado, K-State and Minnesota," he said. "Minnesota just came out on top. It's just where I want to be. No offense to those other programs, they are great programs; I wish them a lot of success. It's just, when I came up here the second time, it really felt like home. I just knew it was the right place for me and the best fit."
In the end, Minnesota was an easy choice for Mayes who liked where the staff was headed with the program.
"I love Coach Kill and his staff—it feels like a big family," he said. "I know they're going to get it turned around here. Minnesota football will return to the great state it was in awhile ago when they were winning national championships. I just want to be a part of that. [I] feel like there is a great group of guys to do it with. The players have all been really nice and welcoming—awesome dudes to me."
Mayes' brother Connor is a 2014 lineman who also holds a Gopher offer. Although both brothers have said they would like to play together in college, Connor will enjoy the recruiting process before making a decision.
"[Connor] was really excited about it," Mayes said. "He said he wants to play wherever I want to play but I'm going to give my little brother his time in the recruiting spotlight and let him do everything that I did even though he went along for the ride with me.
"I just want him to have the experience, junior year, going to all the different places and then junior days and all that stuff. I mean, it would be a dream for him to play with me so hopefully in another year, he'll be committed somewhere and hopefully it's [Minnesota]."
With a number of teams still interested in the older Mayes, Alex says that he is finished taking visits and attending camps.
"I'm done," he said succinctly. "I just want to focus on a state championship now."