A 5-9, 190-pounder who ran a 4.37 yard 40-yard dash over the summer at a football combine, Baynes has been a dominating force so far this season for Coach Mike Battles Jr. Playing in an offense designed to wear down a defense on the ground, Baynes has put up video game numbers to help the Tigers to a 4-1 start.
Despite playing only half a game in three blowout victories, Baynes already has 1,357 yards on the ground on just 109 carries (12.5 yards per attempt) with 14 scores on the ground. Averaging 271.4 yards per game, he has 15 total touchdowns and is excited to be playing such a key role for his team as a senior.
“It’s a pretty good thing,” Baynes said of his role. “We also have another pretty good player on offense, Teddy Brooks, he helps out a lot too. It’s really nice being the main guy on offense. I didn’t expect to be having this much success. I was expecting to do some good things, but I wasn’t expecting to have this many yards in only five games.”
While he wasn’t expecting it, the fact that Baynes is putting up big numbers isn’t a surprise considering his bloodlines. He is the grandson of former Auburn football, baseball and basketball player Ronnie Baynes. One of the most successful prep baseball coaches in Alabama history with five state championships, Baynes also worked 14 years as an NFL official and has two Super Bowls to his credit. He’s currently the Director of Scouting in charge of finding new officials for the NFL
With so much experience to lean on, Baynes said it’s just a great opportunity to learn from his grandfather about life on and off the field.
“I really like being able to talk to him about it,” Baynes said. “He really knows what he’s talking about when it comes to this kind of stuff. It’s really nice having a granddad who came from all of that.”
Currently waiting on his first offer, Baynes said he’s hearing from several schools at the moment, including the Auburn Tigers. Planning to visit the Plains this weekend for the Louisiana Tech game, he said that he’s looking forward to getting to see what Auburn is all about from a recruiting perspective.
“I’m really looking forward to it,” he said about the visit. “I think it will be really fun and a great experience.”
In addition to his football prowess, Baynes is also a talented baseball player for the Tigers. Earning all-state honors in both sports last season, he has an opportunity to play that sport on the next level if football doesn’t work out. While he said he’s okay with playing baseball, Baynes said his heart is set on continuing his football career wherever the road takes him.
“I would like to play football, but if baseball is the one then it doesn’t really matter to me.”
Baynes and the Tallassee Tigers will have a tough test this Friday night when they travel to face rival Dadeville, a team that features Alabama commitment Anfernee Jennings as well as 2016 prospect Shawndarius Jennings.