The rising senior defensive end from Hampton (VA) Bethel High School isn't surprised by the lack of coverage on his recruitment. However, that hasn't stopped college programs from extending scholarship offers.
"I grew a couple of inches
and gained like 30 pounds."
"I think I'm an unknown because last year was my first year playing varsity," said Gayle. "I grew a couple of inches and gained like 30 pounds from my sophomore year to my junior year and that really helped me. I think college coaches found out about me because my team had a good year and my coach put up a highlight tape of me that a lot of the colleges could see.
"I have seven offers right now. Purdue was my first offer, and I have North Carolina State, Syracuse, Central Florida, Marshall, East Carolina, and Richmond. The last was from Syracuse. I got that one a couple of days ago. I think my next one might be from Ohio State. I'm suppose to go up and visit them, and I think they are close to offering."
Checking in at 6-foot-5 and 225 pounds, Gayle excels at weakside defensive end for Bethel. As a junior, he totaled 56 solo tackles, 10 sacks, and 10 quarterback pressures.
"College coaches say that I'm a great pass rusher, and I'm aggressive coming off the edge."
Because he already has several offers, Gayle doesn't know if he'll attend any college camps. He's looking forward to taking some unofficial visits over the summer.
"I'm not sure about going to camps," he stated. "A lot of schools said they want me to take a trip to come and look at the campus. They said I don't need to do camps because they know I can play."
"College coaches say that
I'm a great pass rusher."
Does Gayle have an early favorite?
"I'm not sure because I haven't taken any visits yet," he said. "Purdue would probably be up there because they put defensive ends in the league and that's money. I also like NC State a lot too. I don't know a whole lot about them, but my dad was recruited by North Carolina State and he said it was a really nice campus. I also like how they run a 4-3 defense."
Defensive line coach Keith Willis is recruiting Gayle for the Wolfpack.
"He's a nice guy," said Gayle. "I like him a lot. He's their ends coach, and he's my recruiting coach so I'm getting to know him. He likes how I rush the passer and wants me to go there for a visit."
Don't expect a quick decision as Gayle's recruitment is just now taking shape.
"I can't do anything like that until I go see some schools," he said. "I want to start taking visits this summer and take everything from there."
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