Despite the reputation of Baylor head coach Art Briles as an offensive wizard, the Bears have been loading up on defensive recruits in the 2013 class in an effort to buoy a group that struggled in 2011. Baylor added Rockwall-Heath (Tex.) linebacker Raaquan Davis to the fold on Monday morning.
Now the eighth pledge in the class for Briles, Davis is the fifth defender to commit, as well as the third linebacker, joining West-Orange (Tex.) Stark's Travon Blanchard and Mesquite (Tex.) Horn's DJ Green.
A 6'2, 205-pound outside linebacker who held 13 offers at the time of his commitment, Davis is a consensus three-star prospect by the services, with the exception of a four-star rating by ESPN. Along with offers from Arizona State, Colorado, Connecticut, Iowa, Ole Miss, North Carolina, Northwestern, Wake Forest and Washington State, among others, Davis was also receiving interest from Texas A&M and Oklahoma.
With the speed and size of a big safety, Davis will need to add bulk to transition to the next level, but he's a player perfectly suited for the Big 12 because of his ability to cover ground against the run or the pass, especially with his range from sideline to sideline playing the run inside out.. He's also fluid dropping into coverage.
For linebackers like Davis, the concern is often that they can't win battles against offensive linemen while coming downhill against the run. However, Davis bucks that trend, as he's advanced in being able to use his hands, though he's not quite as strong there as fellow commit Green, who is as good as it gets at the high school level in that regard.
Possessing a skillset that is more impressive than his offer list, Davis represents another important piece in defensive coordinator Phil Bennett's attempts to mold a defense that can take pressure off the high-flying Bears offense.