Gabe Burkle has established himself as one of the top prep players in Iowa. The Class of 2022 Cedar Rapids Prairie High tight end has secured scholarship offers from Power 5 programs and more are showing interest.
Iowa is among the latter group. He'd like for that to continue.
"I did grow up an Iowa fan living 20 minutes from the university. I am well aware of how successful their tight ends have been," he told HN.
Iowa State, Kansas State, Michigan State, Minnesota and Buffalo have reportedly offered him scholarships.
"The schools that are showing the most interest are Iowa State, Kansas State, Minnesota, Michigan State, Northwestern, Indiana, Buffalo, and Army. At this point, all of these schools are high priorities to me. Until I can get out and visit the schools and staffs, all options are open," he said.
Like many prospects across the country, Burkle's recruitment has been compromised by the COVID-19 pandemic. It created a dead period that began last March and will extend at least until April 15. That meant no in-person contact with college coaches or tours of campus facilities.
Burkle did visit Iowa during the Fall of 2019 before the virus hit the country.
"My visit went very well. I loved the facilities and what Iowa football stands for. I haven’t had a lot of contact with the coaches recently and the main communication happens through text messages. My main point of contact is (director of recruiting) Tyler Barnes," he said.
At 6-foot-7, 235 pounds, Burkle likes physicality. That fits well with the Hawkeyes.
"I like the style Iowa football plays with and how they use their tight ends," he said.
Burkle could potentially grow into a tackle. He's aware of Iowa's history converting players at his position into linemen.
"I know how they have recruited tight ends to move to the O-Line, and they have a very high success rate in their philosophy of recruiting. As of now, everyone has recruited me as a tight end but I am open-minded about a possible move," he said.
Burkle is searching for a college and football program that fits his approach to football and academics. He plans on pursuing a Dentistry degree.
"Ideally I’d like to commit before this upcoming football season," he said.
Burkle caught 10 passes for 155 yards and a touchdown this past fall. His season was marred by injury, limiting him to three games.
Rivals and 247Sports rank him as a three-star prospect. The former sees him as the No. 8 overall player in the state for his cycle, while the latter puts him ninth.
Here's a look at Burkle's highlights from a shortened junior season: