Will it be UF, OSU or UT for Baker?

July is always a busy month for announcements as prospects try to make a decision before their senior season starts in August.

This year will be no different as linebacker Jerome Baker (6-1, 206, Cleveland, OH Benedictine) will make his decision this week in front of his friends and family.

“I’m announcing Friday at 10 A.M. at my school with my coaches and teammates,” Baker said. “I’ve had a pretty good idea of where I’m going. I’m going to sit down with everyone on Thursday and have a family meeting and make sure everything is final. I’m going to call all of the coaches before Friday morning and let them know of my decision.”

Florida, Tennessee and Ohio State are his three finalist and he talked to Gator Country about each of his finalists starting with Florida.

“Florida is a very interesting school,” Baker said. “Florida really fits who I am. It’s not too big or too crazy. It just really fits me because it’s laid back and you just handle your business and have fun with it there. Florida is different atmosphere and different culture than I’m used to at home. Florida is just attractive to me.”

Besides the atmosphere Florida created for Baker, the other major thing is Baker’s relationship with defensive coordinator D.J. Durkin.

“Coach Durkin and I have an awesome relationship,” Baker said. “Coach Durkin is someone that I can talk to about everything from my life to football. We have really good conversations with each other and are always relaxed. Our relationship is very strong and open.”

Baker has been to Ohio State several times. While that isn’t the case with Florida, Baker did spend three days in Gainesville. Was it enough time for him to see everything he needed to see?

“I’ve only been to Florida once but it was enough,” Baker said. “I’m confident that I got to see everything that I needed too. I was there for 3 days and Coach Durkin showed me everything I needed to see. It was an awesome time.”

Heading into the week the clear cut leader for Baker was Ohio State in most people’s mind and he talked about why Ohio State is in the mix.

“Ohio State’s main message is that it’s close to home and my family and friends are there,” Baker said. “Ohio State is so close knit and it’s a family atmosphere there as well. Coach Meyer and his staff have created a family environment.”

Last but certainly not least in Baker’s mind is Tennessee, who only received one visit from the linebacker but it was a good visit he says.

“Tennessee is very much in the mix,” Baker said. “I have a great relationship with their coaches and when I went to Tennessee I felt so much love there. The coaching staff and fans showed me a lot of love there.”

Baker plans to make a decision on Friday and he says he’s comfortable with his decision and he’s unsure of any future plans.

“This decision will be pretty much final for me,” Baker said. “If I do take other officials to schools it will be to these three schools only. My official visits are hard to do because my football schedule but I’m undecided on that right now.”

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Andrew Spivey
Andrew always knew he wanted to be involved with sports in some capacity. He began by coaching high school football for six years before deciding to pursue a career in journalism. While coaching, he was a part of two state semifinal teams in the state of Alabama. Given his past coaching experience, he figured covering recruiting would be a perfect fit. He began his career as an intern for Rivals.com, covering University of Florida football recruiting. After interning with Rivals for six months, he joined the Gator Country family as a recruiting analyst. Andrew enjoys spending his free time on the golf course and watching his beloved Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewSpiveyGC.


  1. He’s going to Ohio State! I have a good friend, in Columbus and he’s very connected to Ohio State. He’s wouldn’t give me any specifics; however, he wanted to make a substantial bet and he never does that. We will get the LB’s we really want , so, it won’t hurt us, too bad, to lose out on this kid. It would be nice, however, to land him. I think he is one of the under rated players, like some of the other LB’s we currently have on our roster.