Budda Baker is one of the most highly touted athletes in the country and one of the most sought after prospects in the Pacific Northwest.
Baker attends Bellevue (Wash.) High School, and hails from the city of the same name — Bellevue, Wash. He can play multiple positions, and is listed as a safety by three of the four major recruiting services. He is listed at 5'9 and weighs in at 174 pounds.
He is a consensus-four star recruit, receiving the rating from all four major recruiting services. Scout rates him as the fourth-best safety in the class, Rivals considers him the seventh-best safety in the country, 247sports places him as the sixth-best athlete and ESPN lists him as the ninth-best safety. The 247sports composite considers Baker a four-star prospect, ranking him as the 58th-best prospect in the country, the sixth-best athlete in the class and the best player in the state of Washington.
Baker holds offers from Arizona State, Notre Dame, Oregon, Texas A&M, UCLA, USC and Washington, among others. He can be found on Twitter @buddabaker32.
Derrell Warren, West Coast Recruiting Analyst: Baker is listed at 5'10" and 175 pounds. His frame is a bit limited, so he'll likely top out a bit shy of the 190 pound area.
Baker is a two-way player who actually shows enough promise to project favorably at the next level on both sides of the ball.
Offensively, Baker is primarily used as a running back for his high school team. He is an elusive and coordinated runner who is an efficient mover. He has very good short area quickness and uses very little wasted lateral steps in the backfield. He is an efficient mover, does a great job stabbing his foot in the ground, and cutting up the field vertically.
And the second level, Baker shows an explosive burst. He a playmaker who creates big plays not only due to his athleticism, but also by virtue of great balance. He has a knack for keeping plays alive by being able to stay on his feet through contact and accelerating away from defenders. He exhibits great body control in the way he weaves through defenders in tight areas.
Defensively, Baker is a physical athlete who plays bigger than his listed measureables. He primarily plays free safety for his high school team but likely projects to the cornerback position at the next level.
Baker is a playmaker and is effective at all three levels of the defense. His reactive quickness allows him to be aggressive running the alley in run support. Versus the pass, his instincts and burst off the edge makes him a plus level blitzer. And out in space he and flashes great range operating as a single high safety. He take good angles to the ball and finishes plays. He an explosive leaper with great hands and can create turnovers on contested throws.