PROSPECT ANALYSIS: offensive lineman Eric Gallo, Council Rock South (Pa.) (committed May 29, 2013), two stars, No. 38 in Pennsylvania
Over the past two seasons, one of the main goals in recruiting at Virginia Tech has been developing a new, dominant offensive line. Gallo is one of the players that could play a vital role down the road in returning that unit to where it needs to be.
Though he may be a little raw in his current state, the tools are there to become a powerful guard when he puts it all together. The 6-2, 274-pound bulldozer creates a path wherever he deems fit. While Gallo doesn't own superior speed or agility, he uses a strong center of gravity, balance, and strength to create paths for his runners.
You'll find Gallo's most dominant efforts when he is lined up 1 on 1 along the line with a defensive lineman. Gallo has exceptional upper body strength (he can likely bench-press a car) to win the battle in the trenches quite often. When he gets engaged with a defender, it's all over.
Gallo does demonstrate an ability to pull at the high school level, and when he gets downhill it's difficult to halt the bruiser. Likely Gallo's best strength at the college level will be in pass protection because of his immensely strong upper-half. This will be the area which Gallo is likely to be prepared for sooner than later.
If Gallo develops into the player he could become, it will be an extreme rarity if he allows a sack by his defender. He might not be ready early in his career, but Gallo is certainly a prospect to follow over the next couple of years before hopefully coming into a starting role.
CURRENT VIRGINIA TECH COMPARISON: offensive lineman Caleb Farris
At 6'3" and 303 pounds, Farris offers the body-type that Gallo could grow into after gaining muscle in the weight room. Farris has started 18 games in his career in Blacksburg, and is currently slated as the starting center for 2014.
Farris had a solid 54 knockdowns in 2013 thanks to his strong upper-body, and center is his best suited position as he doesn't own plus-speed, just like Gallo. Center is definitely a possibility in Gallo's future, as he would be the anchor in the middle while keeping the pocket in tact. He would also go up against defensive linemen more often than not, as opposed to blocking linebackers.
Brooks provides a look at the ceiling that Gallo could climb to. Also at 6-2, Brooks got his weight up to 307 his senior season. Brooks owned one of the strongest upper bodies you'll see at guard, and he was incredibly durable. For his final three seasons, Brooks started 41 straight games and was invaluable to the offensive line.
Brooks signed with the Green Bay Packers after finishing his career with the Hokies, and is likely in a select group to start over 40 collegiate games. If Gallo achieves his full potential, Brooks offers a look at the type of player Gallo could become.
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