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Friday, December 7, 2012
ATH Baker excited for Clemson, OU visits

By Bob Przybylo

ESPN 300 athlete Adrian Baker (Hollywood, Fla./Chaminade-Madonna) hasn’t decommitted from Florida State, but he’s looking around.

Baker, who is 6-foot-1 and 165 pounds, is ranked No. 198 in the ESPN 300 and went through the ringer this week.

Adrian Baker
The Sooners view four-star prospect Adrian Baker as an athlete who could play offense in college.
FSU assistant Eddie Gran was the first to visit Baker on Tuesday. Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables followed Wednesday afternoon, while Oklahoma defensive backs coach Mike Stoops closed the show Wednesday night.

“I just don’t know right now,” Baker said. “I’m checking other schools. I have a lot on my mind and a lot of thinking to do.”

Baker won’t get much time to think as he will take an official visit to Clemson this weekend. He said he is being recruited as a cornerback by the Tigers and Seminoles.

“Talking with Coach Venables, he thinks I’m going to like it a lot there,” Baker said. “It’s a great academic school and an ACC powerhouse that competes for championships every year.”

Baker was also able to reconnect with Stoops. Baker developed a solid rapport with Stoops through the spring and summer. He said his talks with Stoops were among his favorite because football was never on the agenda.

And for most of the one hour Stoops was at Baker’s home, football again wasn’t really on the agenda.

“He’s just a funny guy, a good guy,” Baker said. “It went great. My grandmother met him and was really impressed. She just wants to see the campus.”

Her time will come next weekend as Baker is scheduled to take his official visit to Norman, Okla., next weekend, coinciding with OU’s banquet weekend. He was supposed to see the OU campus in October.

At the last minute he was told to stay home by Stoops because Mark Stoops was the FSU defensive coordinator at the time. Mike told Baker he would never recruit against his own brother.

He left the door open, though, saying if something ever changed, Baker was more than welcome to see Norman, Okla.

That changed occurred last week when Mark Stoops left Florida State to become the head coach at Kentucky. Mike Stoops was one of Baker’s first calls, and the two instantly reconnected.

“My opinion of OU never really changed,” Baker said. “I know a lot of people were wondering if I felt different, but I never did.”

Baker said he is scheduled to visit Florida State in January and also said Georgia has entered the picture. The interest from the Bulldogs is recent so he said he is not sure how interested he is at this point.

OU is recruiting Baker as an athlete, something different than the other schools.

“They saw my tape and see what I can do with the ball in my hands,” Baker said. “I don’t have any preference. I think they’re going to have me come to campus and evaluate me from there.”

Baker said follow up visits have not been scheduled, except with OU. Baker said Mike Stoops is scheduled to come back next week before Baker’s official visit to OU next weekend.