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Thursday, March 7, 2013
Watch List S puts HS teammates first

By Mason Kelley

This is the time of year when football recruits can be selfish.

It is an opportunity for the nation’s top prospects to focus on their futures. It is a chance to take unofficial visits, attend junior days and play in 7-on-7 tournaments.

But Bishard “Budda” Baker (Bellevue, Wash./Bellevue) isn’t interested in being selfish.

The ESPN Watch List member would rather spend his time working with his teammates than trying to add scholarship offers.

Bishard Baker
Watch List safety Bishard Baker is focused on winning Bellevue (Wash.) High School a sixth straight state championship.
“I’m just trying to work on my senior season and help all these little guys, because we’ve got a whole bunch of guys leaving,” Baker said. “I’m trying to lead all the young guys and get them better for this season.”

With Division I standouts such as linebackers Myles Jack -- who signed with UCLA -- and Sean Constantine -- he signed with Washington -- heading to college, he knows the Wolverines face a tough task if they want to win their sixth straight state title in 2013.

“I know it’s going to be harder than what it was last year,” Baker said. “I know, if I help the team out, if I help them get better, they’re going to help me get better. I know that when they’re doing the right thing, I’m doing the right thing, too.”

The 5-foot-10, 165-pound safety already has offers from programs such as Oregon, UCLA, Washington and Notre Dame. He knows that if he helps his teammates get better, it will help him in the long run.

“I’ve just been really focusing on them,” Baker said. “I know, with me, it will come. I’m taking the mentality that I’m still working. I’m still trying to get better. I know I have these offers and it’s a blessing, but I’m still just trying to get better.”

Baker knows that at some point soon he is going to have to narrow down his list of potential places to play. While he isn’t travelling right now, he does plan to take all five of his official visits.

But, as far as where he plans to play college football, “I have no clue right now.”