Gardena (Calif.) Serra athlete Khalil Tate (6-2.5, 205) had just an offer from Alabama State when the season started.
In fact, when January started, it was still a lone offer from Tate.
Since then, though, five Pac-12 schools have offered and a couple more national programs have joined the mix.
“Utah and Coach (Sharrieff) Shah offered and then things kind of took off,” said Tate. “They offered me as an athlete and that was my first offer since Alabama State and then a bunch came in.”
And he may not be done.
Where Tate plays remains to be seen. He split time early in the year at quarterback before taking control of the offense down the stretch.
Some schools like him as an athlete, some are specifying quarterback.
“I would love to play quarterback but if there is someone there that might keep me from playing for a while, I’ll play anywhere,” said Tate. “I just want to play early.”
Utah, Florida State, USC and UCLA all said athlete for Tate, but others are more open to quarterback.
“Really, it’s whatever gets me on the field the quickest,” said Tate.
Playing at Serra, where player after player has gone to USC in the past couple of years (seven have either signed with the Trojans or taken a preferred walk-on in the last two classes), Tate said USC is a natural attraction.
“Coach (Clay) Helton and Coach (Tee) Martin like me a lot and they even talked about quarterback some with me,” said Tate. “Of course, I have a lot of my boys going there and we know all about USC at Serra.”
But Tate said he actually grew up a UCLA fan and the offer from the Bruins carried significant weight.
“I’ve known Manny White, who played there and I always loved UCLA and I’ve always been around UCLA, so that has been a school that’s always been on my mind and that was an offer I was really hoping to get,” said Tate.
Tate said he’s talked to a number of UCLA coaches too.
“Coach (Taylor) Mazzone, Coach (DeShaun) Foster and Coach (Adrian) Klemm are the ones I talked to and they offered me,” said Tate. “I’m going to try and get up there and visit soon.”
Tate is planning to visit a number of southern schools too during the spring.
“At the end of this month or next, we’re going to some SEC schools with Keyshawn (Johnson),” said Tate.
Tate will be the primary quarterback for Johnson’s Team 19 7v7 team this spring, after splitting duties last year. But he won’t just play quarterback.
“I’m the main quarterback for Team 19 but when they want to get the younger guys in, I’m going to play receiver,” said Tate.
Last fall, Tate attended games at both the Coliseum (USC-Cal, USC-Colorado) and the Rose Bowl (UCLA-USC).
“That was a lot of fun to get to go to games at both schools and just see the atmosphere and the environments,” said Tate.
Whether he stays local or leaves the West Coast, the decision is up to Tate and distance won’t play a factor.
“Distance doesn’t play a role,” said Tate. “My family wants to see me do something on my own and explore the world and see what the world has to offer other than Los Angeles.”
Tate is planning to enroll next January, so he doesn’t anticipate dragging his recruitment out.
“I plan on leaving early, so I’ll be making a commitment sometime before summer is over,” said Tate.
Academically, Tate has a 3.8 and will take the SAT in March.