Bears sign 20 athletes to Letters of Intent

Coach Guy Morriss of Baylor University announced a signing class of 20 athletes, including a juco transfer who is already enrolled and attending school. The class would appear to have balance, address need, and contain some very good athletes.

Most of the signees are from Texas with two exceptions: WR David Gettis from Los Angeles Dorsey High School, and Juco Transfer Matt Lott from Pearl River CC in Mississippi.

In alphabetical order, the players are:

Justin Akers, TE, 6-5, 220, 4.8, Deer Park, Texas – led the Deer in receptions with 26 catches for 462 yards, a respectable 17.8 yards per catch and five touchdowns. Justin has earned all-district recognition in both football and basketball, and he also runs track and is on the baseball team. Preseason honors include his selection as one of the Top 10 TE's in the state by Texas Football Magazine. Post-season honors found him on the Waco Tribune Top 100.

Mikail Baker, WR, 6-0, 180, 4.5, Dallas Skyline, Texas - A two-time 9-5A All-District performer for the Raiders, Mikail helped get his team to the first round of the playoffs. A member of the Dallas Area Top 100 (no. 86), Mikail also found himself a participant in the 2005 Coca Cola High School All-Star Game. His senior year saw Mikail catch 50 passes for 750 yards, a 15 yards per catch average. Mikail also scored 8 touchdowns. He also ran the ball 12 times for 150 yards and two scores (12.5 avg.).

Thad Boatner, OL, 6-7, 280, Hamilton, Texas - A 2004 Associated Press and Texas Sports Writer's Association All-State selection, Thad was also a 2004 Prep Star national All-American. Thad dominated both lines of scrimmage and was named all-district, both offensive and defensive. Thad averaged 8.6 pancake blocks per game and had average or 15.5 knockdowns per game. Defensively, Boatner averaged 9.6 tackles per game, and had totals of 5 sacks, caused four fumbles, recovered two fumbles, broke up four passes, and blocked a field goal attempt. Coming from a small school, a redshirt year is definitely in Mr. Boatner's plans.

Shon Brown, LB, 6-0, 220, 4.6, Waco, Texas - One of three signees from Waco High (13-5A), Shon is rated #91 on the Dallas Morning News State Top 100, he also managed to place on the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram, Houston Chronicle, and Waco Tribune Herald Top 100 football lists. Shon was credited for 118 tackles, 18 for loss, and five sacks as a senior in 2004.

Trey Bryant, DT, 6-3, 313, 4.9, Richardson Berkner, Texas - It's been awhile since the Bears signed a defensive tackle off the Dallas State Top 100 list, but Trey is certainly that. He has good size and very good speed to be that large. A member of the second trio of athletes living in the same town to sign with the Bears (Waco was the other), Trey led his Rams to their first ever playoff spot. As a senior, Trey was credited with 58 tackles, had five sacks, forced four fumbles, also had 15 pressures and broke up six passing attempts on his way to first-team all-city and second-team all-district honors.

David Gettis, WR, 6-4, 198, 4.35, Los Angeles Dorsey, California - The highest ranked high school recruit signed by the Bears, David Gettis will not only play football for Baylor, but run track as well. Gettis can fly and can certainly stretch defenses. Super Prep rates Gettis as the 38th best player in California. Gettis picked up 600 yards on 31 catches, a whopping 19.4 yards per catch. Gettis won the state 400 meters title in 47.1 seconds as a sophomore, then won gold again as a junior with a 46.3.

Cory Gindratt, DB/RB, 6-0, 175, 4.5, Amarillo Palo Duro, Texas - Cory played extensively on both sides of the ball picking up 9 touchdowns on his way to 703 yards on 89 carries (7.9 yard avg.). Cory was a unanimous all-district pick in the secondary, and also made the all-district offensive team.

Jordan Hearvey, OL, 6-4, 254, 4.9, Richardson High, Texas - Any school would be drawn to a player with 45 pancake blocks his senior season and thus was Baylor to Jordan Hearvey. Jordan played tackle for Richardson High School and did a good enough job to be selected to both the all-city team and make all-district. Jordan joins the Richardson Berkner duo of Trey Bryant and Jason Lamb to make up the second trio contingent from the same town to sign with the Bears.

Antonio Jones, LB, 6-3, 215, 4.6, Dallas Lincoln, Texas - Antonio amassed 15 tackles, 35 of them for losses, and forced 10 fumbles to go along with 8 sacks to be selected to the Dallas Morning News All Area First Team. He was also an Associated Press honorable mention to the 2004 Class 4A All-State Team. Jones also participated in the 2005 Coca-Cola High School All-Star football game.

Jordan Lake, DB, 6-2, 205, 4.6, Houston Memorial, Texas - Jordan Lake, a Houston Touchdown Club Defensive Player of the Year finalist was also named Defensive MVP of District 18-5A. Lake was credited with 119 tackles his senior year, 12 of them tackles for loss. Two of his four pass interceptions he returned for touchdowns. He also stood out on special teams blocking four kicks and returning a punt for a touchdown. He also averaged 25 yards per kick-off return and 16-yards per punt return. The Mustang also earned 18-5A All-District Honors as a unanimous choice, as well as being named to the All-Greater Houston Second-Team Defensive unit by the Houston Chronicle.

Jason Lamb, 6-6, 225, 4.7, Richardson Berkner - Jason came in at #61 on the Dallas Morning News All-Area Top 100 team. He also was named second team All-State as a DE by the Associated Press. Lamb was named to first team all-district at both Tight End and Defensive End.

Matt Lott, 6-5, 300, 5.0, Pearl River Comm. College - Matt Lott signed with the Bears in December and is currently attending classes. Matt was named first team All-American by the NJCAA as well as the Gridwire Scholar Athlete All-American Team. Allowed just one sack on a Pearl River JC team which led the nation in passing offense and captured both the MACJC and National Junior College Athletic Association national titles en route to a perfect 12-0 record.

LeQuantum McDonald, 6-3, 230, 4.6, Waco High, Texas - LeQuantum joins older brother LaQuaylan McDonald who'll be a senior offensive lineman for the Bears this fall as well as two Waco High teammates who signed with Baylor. A member of the Waco Tribune Herald Top 100, LeQuantum was credited with 112 tackles his senior year, including 8 sacks leading the way to his selection as honorable mention to the 5A All-State Team.

Joseph Pawelek, LB, 6-2, 210, 4.7, Smithson Valley Spring Branch, Texas - Joseph also made the Waco Tribune Herald's Top 100, and in addition was ranked #2 on the San Antonio Express-News' Area Top 10, and #40 on its State Top 50. Pawelek snatched almost 200 tackles (197) this past season and recovered six fumbles. He was named the San Antonio Express-News Defensive Player of the Year. He was also honored as a 5-A All State Honorable Mention.

Dan Sherwood, 6-7, 220, 4.9, Amarillo High, Texas - For a tight end who snatched 24 passes for 279 yards, Dan Sherwood is also an excellent blocker who was named to the 2-5A all-district team. Dan also throws the shot put and plays basketball.

Carl Sims, WR 5-10, 165, 4.5, Waco High, Texas - The third of the Waco High Gang who signed with Baylor, Carl played quarterback for the Lions last season, rushing for 1,296 yards and 16 touchdowns, on his way to being named District 13-5A MVP. Carl is also a decent basketball player earning All-Super Centex status.

Cordney Smith, RB, 6-0, 205, 4.4, Duncanville High, Texas - Although "not rated" by, Cordney was rated as the 17th best running back in the nation by competitor Smith, who made the Waco Tribune Herald's Top 100, was the 3rd leading rusher in the entire Dallas - Fort Worth Metroplex with 1,667 yards on 243 carries, a per-carry average of 6.86 yards. Selected the Bears over Utah, Colorado State, LSU, Texas A&M, Iowa, Nebraska, and Georgia.

Blake Szymanski, QB, 6-4, 190, 4.5, Wichita Falls Rider, Texas - Although not listed in the data base until after his commitment to Baylor, Blake was named the Class 4A Offensive Player of the Year by the Texas Sportswriter's Association, and of course on their all-state team. He was named All-State Honorable Mention by the Associated Press. A member of the Waco Tribune Herald Top 100, Szymanski threw for 4,083 yards last season including 45 touchdown tosses to lead his team to an 11-3 record. He also ran the ball for 445 yards and ten more touchdowns. Blake completed 59.8% of his 465 passes which relates into 278 receptions. In the playoffs, Blake led his team to a 63-42 upset over Stephenville in the first round of the playoffs.

Queito Teasley, RB, 6-1, 180, 4.4, Katy Cinco Ranch, Texas - Queito, who was rated the 47th top player on the Dallas Morning News Top 100, also made The Houston Chronicle, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, and Waco Tribune Herald Top 100 lists. Ranked as Texas' 87 best player by's Super Prep, Queito rushed for 982 yards on 184 carries (5.3 ypc) to amass 11 touchdowns. He also had 25 receptions for 250 yards and two more touchdowns. Queito had scholarship offers from Oklahoma, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, and Wisconsin, among others.

Jeremy Williams, DB, 5-10, 198, 4.5, Dallas Carter, Texas - Used in a variety of ways, this all-purpose athlete played defense and offense, doubling there as a running back and wide receiver. Jeremy rushed for 309 yards on 52 carries (5.94 yards per carry) and five touchdowns and caught 4 passes for 45 yards. He was named to the 9-5A All-District Team as a defensive back by the Dallas Morning News.

There you have it, rated or not, one of the better classes recruited and signed by the Baylor Bears. It has balance, addresses need, and is a culmination of talent that, on paper anyway, looks as good as we've seen in some time

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