Kennedale’s Baron Browning is the class of 2017’s latest four-star athlete to verbally pledge to Baylor.
The 6’3”, 220-pound middle linebacker is the top-rated player at his position according to 247Sports’ Composite Rankings.
His commitment Saturday is the fourth in three days for the Bears.
But despite all the hype around the nation of his decision, Browning continues to stay focused on the task at hand: the 2015 high school season.
He said that his time as a Kennedale Wildcat “has formed me into the young man I am today. Most importantly, it taught me that being humble takes you a long way, and it’s the best way to be …”
Browning missed a few games last season due to injury but is ready to lead a Wildcat team considered by many to control again 4A Division I’s District 5.
Kennedale’s success relies on the play of its defense—especially this year. Running back Juwan Washington, now playing at San Diego State, was a 2,000 plus yard rusher for the Wildcats.
Browning looks to lead his team by keeping opposing offenses in check. The Wildcats require selflessness if they are to remain undefeated in district play.
Head coach Richard Barrett and his staff “has taught me that no man is bigger than the team,” Browning said.
With the running back position open to newcomers, that’s the attitude the Wildcats need most.
When Browning heads to Baylor, that’s the same mindset he will take with him. He’ll also be a force few on the offensive side of the ball will want to take head on.
As a linebacker, his first step is exactly where his coaches want it to be: downfield. Browning is forceful, fast and intelligent. His play proves he has a knack for the game.
Even as a freshman, he showed discipline in following his assignments and stayed focused and aware during gadget plays. His versatility will serve Baylor’s defense well. Browning is a rare athlete who can stuff the run and contribute to stopping the pass. He used his 4.5 forty-yard dash time and excellent anticipation to grab a few interceptions in 2014; he wears many hats—even contributing to the Wildcat secondary as a safety at times last season.
But the most telling piece of who he is as a player comes on special teams. His motor runs all the time. Browning doesn’t stop and takes each of his roles seriously.
He also takes his verbal commitment seriously.
“I’m 100 percent committed to Baylor,” Browning told 247Sports. “I’m not going to de-commit. I’m going to stand strong on my word as a man. Baylor is the place that I want to be at to take my game to the next level.”
VIDEO: BROWNING’S FRESHMAN HIGHLIGHT REEL