The Baylor Bears finished off their 2017 class with two signing day surprises as defensive end Justin Harris and tight end B.J. Thompson signed with the Bears. Harris, a 3-star defensive end form East Ascension High School in Louisiana chose Baylor over a late offer from LSU. The Louisiana native is 6-foot-6, and 250 pounds bringing size and upside to the defensive line. With offers from Purdue, Houston, Kansas, and Memphis, Harris cut his final two to Baylor and LSU last week.
Harris will join fellow defensive ends Cole Maxwell, Chidi Ogbonnaya, and Demarco Artis who committed last night, to help fortify the Bears defensive line. Signees Rob Saulin and Thompson could also play on the defensive side of the ball, though tight end might be a better fit. Harris is the 45th ranked defensive end in the class, the highest rated that Baylor was able to sign.
Thompson was an even bigger surprise, signing around 8am, well before his scheduled afternoon announcement. Baylor, Texas, Florida State, Utah and Washington State were his finalists. Listed as a defensive end, Thompson is an intriguing option at tight end, due to his 6-foot-6 frame. The England, Arkansas player is the 155th ranked end in the nation, and recently was given his third star on scout.
One of the fastest late risers over the last month, Thompson received offers from Baylor, Utah, and Florida State in January, visiting the Bears and Seminoles. A one-time Washington State commit, Thompson verballed to the Cougars in late November, but opened back up after the new offers came in January.
The Baylor class is final now, with 27 commitments. A class that was just a single player in Jalen Pitre at Christmas time exploded to include players from all over the US. Stay tuned for more analysis and reaction to the recent signees and how they fit with the new Baylor football program.