Scout first wrote about Travis Sailo in May, but we got our first live look at the 2016 three-star on Friday and he more than held his own. It’s not hard to imagine the Samoan playing in the SEC a few falls from now.
Scout.com traveled to Gordo, Ala. to see the hometown Green Wave take on Buhl (Ala.) Sipsey Valley on Friday, and the prospects already on Scout’s radar didn’t disappoint.
Only one, however, truly exceeded expectations during what ended up being a blowout win for Gordo on Homecoming.
Sipsey Valley’s Travis Sailo.
The thick linebacker prospect, just a junior, lined up at several positions on each side of the ball but truly shined as a second-level defender on defense with quick reads and punishing tackles. Pair that with defensive end size and more strength than most, and the ceiling continues to stretch higher and higher.
Mississippi State noticed this spring, offering the three-star linebacker projection soon after seeing him in person.
“It feels great, it felt good,” Sailo said of the news. “It feels good. I’ve got to play hard, finish and keep working together with my teammates.”
Somehow the Bulldogs remain the only school showing any consistent interest in the 6-foot-3, 240-pounder.
“They like me as a linebacker or on the line,” he said. “It’s the linebacker coach, he sends me letters and stuff. It’s Coach (Geoff) Collins.
“(Sipsey Valley) Coach (Antonio Ford) told me they offered and I was surprised. It’s not all about me though, it’s my teammates.”
Size? Check. Speed? Check. Power? Check. Humble? Check.
There’s a lot to like about Sailo, who is still adjusting to the South.
“I’m from American Samoa, it’s in the Pacific,” he said. “It was 2011 or ’12, when my aunt got a new job so I had to come down here.”
Still unsure if he’ll stay local or look to play college football on the West coast, he admits there are benefits to SEC country despite its glaring differences when compared to the islands.
“It’s country,” he said, laughing. “I’m not used to that, but I’m getting there. The food is straight.”
Sailo, who led Sipsey Valley in tackles Friday, says he has no position preference at this time between the trenches or the second level.
“I can play both,” he said.