Dayon Hayes is Westinghouse's first major football prospect in two decades
Monte’ Robinson is a proud Westinghouse High School alumnus, and for the past decade, he has been the head coach of his beloved football program.
But even Robinson can’t remember the last time Division I football schools were sniffing around the second-smallest school in Pittsburgh’s ever-dwindling City League. That’s why it came as such a surprise that Pitt is in the House.
Dayon Hayes, a 6-foot-3, 240-pound defensive end for Westinghouse received a scholarship offer Feb. 3 from the hometown Panthers. Even the most ardent followers of local high school football might not know the name — and he barely has a profile page, let alone a star rating from recruiting websites at this point — but Hayes plans for that to change this year in his senior season, if it hasn’t already.
“Next year, I want 40 sacks,” Hayes said recently. “I had 26 last year. I want to double that.”
His coach backs up that sack number from 2018, when Westinghouse went 5-7 but finished as City League runner-up to Allderdice. Naturally, Hayes was a first-team All-City selection, and before Pitt came through, he received offers from Howard, Toledo and Ball State, in that order.
But his recruitment has gone to another level now. It was headed that way when Pitt’s coaches started following him on Twitter, and became official when they invited him to visit campus on their annual “junior day” then hit him with the big news.
“There were only two of us that got offers that day, so I was surprised,” Hayes admitted.
Pitt and Syracuse are the only ones from power-five programs, but Hayes has also picked up Bowling Green, Kent State, Navy and Massachusetts from the FBS, as well as FCS powers William & Mary and Youngstown State. Wake Forest, Wisconsin and Temple are now showing interest, according to his coach.