For his efforts, Gallagher was named All-First Coast, All-County, Florida Times Union Super 24, Florida Times Union Super 11, and 4A All-State in the state of Florida.
Florida, Florida State, Miami, Auburn, Cincinnati, UConn, Louisville, UCLA, USF, UCF, Vanderbilt, South Carolina, Arkansas, Kentucky, and others all offered prior to Gallagher committing to Wake Forest.
Although rated a three-star prospects and the #82 defensive end nationally by Scout.com, one of his Nease coaches expects much more from the Jacksonville native during his career in Winston-Salem as he has seen Gallagher grow to be a great player during Gallagher's time at Nease.
"He's a kid who I remember when he practiced for the 1st time in pads as a freshman, it was like watching a fish swim in water. He has a natural innate understanding for the game," said Nease assistant coach David San Juan. According to Coach San Juan, Gallagher is one of the best players he has ever seen and had the pleasure to coach. For a program that sends prospects such as Tim Tebow, James Wilson, Hunter Haynes, and others to D-I schools each year, Coach San Juan's comments are even more telling.
"I get frustrated with the star rankings and all that," San Juan said. "I've watched film and see these guys and I guarandamntee you if he was going to Alabama or FSU, he would be 4 star or 5 star. There's something about going to Wake Forest where you may not get the respect but I guarantee you he will prove himself on the field. He is that good."
Although Gallagher may not get the highest level of respect from recruiting services across the country, San Juan expects that Gallagher will prove himself soon enough. "If John Gallagher isn't a 5 star guy, I don't know how to coach," San Juan noted. "He's going to get to Wake and show he's a 5 star guy. He's going to be one of the best you've ever seen at Wake Forest, I promise you that."