Wednesday, July 3, 2013
Baker makes a dozen commits for UGA
By Kipp Adams
After visiting his top schools in the spring, three-star defensive tackle Kendall Baker (Atlanta/Marist) was facing a tough choice. The 6-foot-5, 284-pound prospect had double-digit offers, but in the end it came down to Auburn and Georgia for Baker.
“Auburn made a run for it and I had to make my decision between Auburn and Georgia, but in the end this decision was pretty easy,” Baker said. “I am committed to the University of Georgia.”
Baker said he was convinced Georgia was the right when two assistant coaches reached out to him recently.
“A few weeks ago, Coach (Chris) Wilson and Coach (Bryan) McClendon direct messaged me saying to tell my dad Happy Father’s Day,” Baker said. “That just showed me how much they care about me and how important family is to them.”
While Atlanta is known as a transient city, Baker is not among the upper-echelon recruits with no ties or feelings of loyalty to the Peach State. He sees the chance to play for the local SEC program as a dream come true.
“There is nothing like playing for your home state school where you grew up rooting for the whole time,” Baker said. “It is an honor to know I get a chance to represent my home state where I have been all of my life. A lot of people I grew up with will get the chance to see me play.”
Baker mentioned his family’s positive reviews of Athens as a factor in his decision, but also stated he would probably still attend Georgia if he were not playing football. Family is important to Baker, and he is looking forward to becoming part of a new one soon.
“A lot of my friends have committed to Georgia and I am looking forward to joining the family in Athens with them,” Baker said. “Jeb Blazevich, Sony Michel and I all played in an All-American game in middle school, and I am good friends with Dontavius Russell, Nick Glass and Detric Dukes, who all played with me in Rising Seniors. Hopefully some more guys can get on board soon while there is still room.”
With the addition of Baker, Georgia now has 12 commitments for the Class of 2014, eight of which are in-state prospects. All five defensive commitments are from Georgia as well. The Bulldogs will likely sign between 20-22 in this recruiting cycle, and depending on need, Baker could help out on either side of the ball.
“They are recruiting me as a defensive lineman and they have not really mentioned playing offense,” Baker said. “I prefer playing defense but if they ask me to play on the offensive line I would not have a problem with it. If I need to switch over there to get on the field that would be fine with me.”