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March 19, 2013All but one of Art Briles's Baylor signing classes have included at least one Waco-area product. He and his fellow coaches have made a point to mine the area for talent.
The latest find is Jamie Jacobs, a 6-4, 210-pound linebacker from Midway High, the same school that produced two current starting defenders (Ahmad Dixon and Beau Blackshear). Jacobs got his offer Tuesday morning and was pretty eager to talk about it.
"Yes, I was very excited," said Jacobs, who spoke with three of Baylor's coaches -- Brian Norwood, Jim Gush and Phil Bennett. "It happened this morning. My coach called me and said he had the Baylor coaches on the phone."
After starting last season as the weak-side linebacker, Jacobs said he hopes to put on 10 pounds before next season. The weight would give him the chance to grow into a role as a pass-rushing defensive end, a position the Baylor coaches told him would be a good fit.
The coaches also made it known how much they'd like Jacobs to continue the local Waco-to-Baylor pipeline.
"Basically, I have all the time in the world," he said, "but they told me I was one of the first linebackers they were going to come after. They want me to come out to the spring practices. They talked a little about a commitment but also told me to take my time."
The offer didn't exactly blindside Jacobs. He has visited Baylor before, including attending Baylor's junior day on Feb. 2.
"I got to see how the coaches work with the players, just got to see them in person," he said. "I love the environment and I was very impressed with the fast tempo of the practices."
He said the coaches filled his head "with a lot of information," from practice routines to the opening of the new Baylor Stadium in 2014. The 2014 signing class, Jacobs was reminded, would be the first freshman class to play in the new on-campus stadium.
Baylor will have competition, though. Jacobs said Oklahoma, Rice and Tulsa have started to show interest as well. But also expect Baylor to continue to push to land Jacobs. The coaches like his potential, and they know how important it is to keep local talent around.