December 16, 2013

Campbell gets his chance

The last time Baylor nabbed a linebacker from California that turned out to be a really good find. All Eddie Lackey did was turn into an all-Big 12 performer.

So why not try it again.

Bakersfield College's Grant Campbell had been talking to Baylor coach Jim Gush so much, it must have felt like he had already been in Waco. But the JUCO star inside/outside stopper finally made his appearance in Waco on Dec. 7 for his official visit when Baylor played Texas to close out Floyd Casey Stadium.

What Gush and the rest of the Baylor coaching staff saw in person validated what they thought they saw on the film Campbell sent to them in mid-November. There was something to 108 tackles, 2 sacks and 7 tackles for loss.

Within the last couple of days, Campbell gave his verbal commitment to the Bears. He will sign his letter of intent on Wednesday have three years to play two.

Campbell really delayed making much out of the commitment because he had an offer from Cal and took an official visit there this past weekend.

"Really, Baylor offered me the day after the Texas game,'' Campbell said. "They said they liked the way I moved especially laterally. I really liked it at Baylor. I think I'm going to fit in well there. But I promised my mom I would take my official visit to Cal just to be sure. It didn't change my mind.''

What turned the visit is what happened after the Texas game. He spent a lot of time with Lackey talking about what it will mean to take over for someone who made the most out of his two years.

Campbell considers himself flexible to play both inside and outside linebacker. But the idea is that he will be the next will linebacker. His size is pretty comparable to Lackey whom Baylor found at Riverside (CA) C.C. Campbell is 6-1, 230. Lackey is 6-0, 220. And Campbell's family does have a Big 12 connection. His older brother Jack played at Texas Tech within the last seven years.

A native of Bakersfield who also played baseball at Cal-State Bakersfield, Campbell was also a three-year starter in high school at Bakersfield Garces Memorial.

"The coaches told me how much I remind them of Eddie,'' Campbell said. "What's perfect is that what we play at Bakersfield on defense (4-2-5) is exactly what Baylor does. So I think it's going to help me a lot. I bring my heart and leadership.

"I'm an emotional guy. I dreamed of playing big-time football in college. I didn't get much interest in high school. Now I have my chance.''

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