"It feels great to be able to make plays for my team," Gay said. "I just wanted to come up big and help make stops. It's amazing to be able to make plays and help the team."
Starkville and West Point are annual rivals, so the game day atmosphere was certainly intense. The Yellow Jackets and Green Wave really got after each other in what is always a very physical match-up.
"We felt it," Gay said. "In the second half, we just didn't let up at all. We just turned it up even more and worked hard to keep them off of the board."
Those efforts were productive as the stingy Jacket defense secured the shut out against an offense that is known for scoring points in bunches. The defensive efforts have been strong all season, but SHS faced a prolific passing offense against Oxford in week two and a ground and pound attack from West Point in week three.
The combined efforts of those two teams yielded just one score when Oxford cashed in after taking over in the Starkville redzone after an early turnover.
Gay believes that his defensive unit has the chance to have a special season if everyone continues to work hard.
"When we're feeling it, nobody can score on us," Gay said. "Our front four is amazing and no one can block them when they are really turned up. They're going to keep going and the rest of us are too."
Mississippi State is one of four early offers for Gay, all of his current options are from SEC programs. More schools are showing interest, so Gay should see a nice run on offers following his junior campaign.
While the hometown Bulldogs were the first to offer, Gay is trying to keep an open mind about his college options in the early stages of his recruitment.
"I am just taking my time with it," Gay said of his decision making process. "I am just letting it all come in. I am just getting ready for Kemper Academy next week. We're just trying to keep doing what we're doing until the season is over."
Gay is one of several of Mississippi State's top recruiting targets that are expected to be on campus this weekend as the Bulldogs host LSU in the SEC opener for both teams. Gay has attended several games at Davis Wade Stadium in recent years and the talented linebacker plans to make the rounds this fall to see several college games.
Willie Gay is arguably the state's top linebacker prospect for the 2017 signing class. He is currently ranked four stars and included in the Scout National 300 for the 2017 signing class.