Let the run on what my dad would call "pie-eaters" begin! Darius Moore, OG from Missouri City, Texas, became Baylor's first high school OL and nineteenth overall commitment late last night. Moore likely came on to Baylor's radar due to the recruitment of his teammate, Maurice Porter, who committed to Texas Tech early in July and holds a Baylor offer. A quality prospect in his own right, Moore plays some guard and some tackle for Fort Bend Marshall HS, and the Baylor coaches determined earlier this month to extend his first (and to date, only) offer from a BCS program. I'm glad to see that we're still hitting the Houston area hard, considering we have been accused in years past of ignoring it almost completely. It doesn't hurt that Moore's commitment might help draw Porter's eye back to BU, either. But enough of that, here's the pertinent info about Darius below the jump:
This is going to sound weird coming from the same guy that basically ceded all trust regarding player acquisition to Briles last night, but I'm getting a little apprehensive about the string of recruits pulling the trigger lately. Specifically, the fact that none of them are highly-ranked or greatly-recruited bothers me, even if it is just a little bit.
Knowing that recruiting services are far from perfect and we're still relatively early in the evaluation cycles for 2013 (outside of the consensus top recruits, those guys are pretty well established by this point) and things can change quickly-- take the fact that Kyle Fulks went from an unknown to a 4* by 247Sports, for example-- I'd still like to see more offers from major schools and/or higher grades than we've gotten on our last few commits. That doesn't mean I don't think those guys can be great players for us or that I don't trust our coaching staff to identify talent, it just makes me wonder if striking out on a few of our higher-ranked targets, particularly on the offensive and defensive lines, have us reaching somewhat. When I start down that path of questioning, however, I remember that our rarely offers anyone without having evaluated them first-hand, and when they do, it's because the player in question is a no-doubt stud. Not to focus on Moore specifically, but if we took him, I have to believe it is because we think he is a Big 12-caliber player at a need position. With so few spots remaining in the class and a staff that is not known for pulling offers later from committed recruits, it stands to reason that they think he's worth it.
Anyway, Moore's commitment puts us at 19 for the class out of a probable final total of something like 25 or 26. One of the remaining spots, I believe, has been earmarked for Ricky Seals-Jones, should he decide that Baylor is the place he wants to be. They'll keep that open for him as long as they think they have a chance. Another is being held, I think, for Quincy Russell, a JUCO DT who originally signed with Texas (by his own statements, Baylor finished second for the 4* recruit two years ago) but is not being recruited by the Longhorns this go-round. Here's a recent update with Russell on BearsTruth ($$) about Baylor's chances. Should he decide to come to Waco, he will fill a big need as an immediate contributor next year at DT. A third spot is probably reserved for Andrew Billings, a 4* DT from Waco High who is taking his recruitment very slowly. Count those three as having spots we'll keep open and we're probably looking at 3-4 others available for another TE (probably HS)*, two, maybe three more OL (with a center definitely among them), and maybe another defensive lineman if one pops up.
*I should note that there is some speculation that things may not be 100% finished with Christian Morgan. Just speculation, though. He'd have a spot if he wanted to change his mind.
I hope that my idle musings haven't diminished your enthusiasm about this commitment or any others. I have no doubt at this point that we're looking at Art Briles' best recruiting class yet, and the fact that we have 19 commits on July 26 is nothing short of astounding. Getting commitments like this early gives us the chance to solidify during the season while focusing on the big dogs left on our board, and who knows, perhaps I'll be 100% wrong again to question Briles and company at finding football players.