Ohio State Linebacker Jerome Baker Declares for 2018 NFL Draft

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BuckeyeBoiler's picture

I'm assuming Harrison-Borland-Booker is the odds-on favorite for next year?

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KevinJ's picture

I don't think Booker will be a starter next year, did he even play in the B1G CG or the Cotton Bowl, I don't remember seeing him.

Good luck to Mr Baker. 

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BuckeyeBoiler's picture

I can't argue with that - I think it's hard for my mind to get around the fact that Booker was so hyped in 2016 and then got injured (leading to Baker's ascension IIRC).  Was thinking/hoping he'd be able to get everything together for 2018.

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BUCKAROOTIMESTWO's picture

Rumor from another site is that Booker will declare!

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kareemabduljacobb's picture

Browning gonna be a beast next year.  

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LB U's picture

Similar to Okudah, i'd be shocked if Browning isn't starting next year.

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BuckeyeLefty's picture

As long as Bill Davis doesn't tell him to run the wrong way.

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Silver Sniper's picture

My guess: Harrison, Borland, Browning 

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ChazBuckeye's picture

This^^^^^
With Hilliard coming in for Harrison and/or Browning.

It is time!!!!!

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martin anderson's picture

Justin Hilliard was a 5* out of St X. Why no mention of him?

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Evannati's picture

He was such a stud at St. X.  Maybe hardest-hitting high school player I've ever seen. 

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Calgarybuck's picture

I remember him knocking down 300 pound LT's love his speed, hope he's able to make it happen! 

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BuckminsterFullback's picture

Sometimes, the missing ability is availability.

Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth.

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DFrelin06's picture

He battled injuries for so long, he's kinda got lost in the shuffle. But I think he definitely stood out on special teams in the Cotton Bowl, and with his athleticism I think he'll be a starter next year.

"When you win, say nothing. When you lose, say less" - Paul Brown

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teddyballgame's picture

Not sure if anyone has earned favorite status.  I would hope there's a lot of competition for the LB spots because that group struggled a bit.

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BrutusB's picture

I would say Borland is a near lock at this point. But the other 2 are certainly up for grabs.

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High Street Street Fighter's picture

I wouldn't call it a near-lock, but Harrison has got to be pretty close given how much he played at the end of the year.

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Hovenaut's picture

Godspeed, JB. 

I'm not around that much, running exhausted and lost...

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BuckeyeLefty's picture

Baker will be missed. Great talent behind him, but very good leadership and skill himself. 

He led all LB's in most of their biggest games ... 7 tackles vs OU, 7 vs PSU ... about the only LB to show up vs Iowa with 8 ... and a whopping 16 tackles (7 for loss) vs Wisconsin. He led the team in tackles, and led all LB's in passes broken up. 

http://www.cfbstats.com/2017/player/518/1072199/tackle/gamelog.html

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Cincybuckeye's picture

Won't lie, I'm slightly surprised by this decision. Still a great talent and I expect him to have a great career in the League.

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analyticalguy's picture

I'm not. I always viewed his departure as likely (although not certain), despite some some slippage in production this year up until the final few games.

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OSUBias's picture

And he should do very well at the combine, and someone will ignore the lapses in positioning in favor of exceptional athleticism. 

Braving the long dark of the offseason

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HandsOfSweed's picture

Yep. Plays in Western PA, wears black, loves gorging themselves on Buckeyes, may need to replace 1 freakshow from OSU with another one that is also a raw but very coachable kid. Baker has Pittsburgh written all over him.

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LoufromOSU's picture

Only issue is that he probably won't be available at pick 64 and not sure he is worthy of the 32nd pick with the needs at Safety, TE and QB heir. 

"Great moments are born from great opportunities."  - Herb Brooks

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CincyBuck's picture

To be sure, he had a rough year at times (which is what I assume you're referring to).  But he put a lot of good things on tape last year (and, at other times, this year, too).  And he strikes me as one of those guys who will destroy the NFL Combine.  So I suspect he'll go in the first 1-3 rounds, regardless of a somewhat disappointing 2017.

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GoBuckeyes1020's picture

He will light up the combine

The pain of discipline or the pain of regret, take your pick

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BGSUBucksFan's picture

Many players with sophomore breakout seasons tend to regress in year 3. I think evaluators will look at their breakout season to determine their ceiling and their regression to point out their deficiencies. Baker is a solid prospect.

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AzBuck50's picture

Same thoughts. Surprised. He even says he will drop a few rounds due to this season. That would put a bad taste in my mouth to try and get back to playing like a first round pick. However, he played really well the last few games of the season and I hope he goes high in the draft with good workouts. 

Azbuckeye50

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SnooBucki's picture

Good luck bro, next man up! We've got some good ones

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smithwessonBuckeye's picture

Good luck, Jerome!

Get get some money young lad.

If you click to go to my website, I am not responsible.

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D-Train's picture

If you have to go 20 games back to find the highlight I'm not sure he has the habit of doing it. I hope he does well but he really could've helped himself with a strong final year.

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mockjocks's picture

If you have to go 20 games back to find the highlight I'm not sure he has the habit of doing it.

I can't argue that. He frustrated the shit outta me most of this season. Still, he's got the tools for the next level - just needs to work on the motor

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bennyhana311's picture

Anyone know when we'll have confirmation of all early departures?

Football is, after all, a wonderful way to get rid of your aggressions without going to jail for it.
- Woody Hayes

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UrbanBuckeye's picture

I believe next Monday, the 15th, is the draft declaration deadline.

Harbaugh puts ketchup on his steak.

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Cincybuckeye's picture

January 15th is the deadline to announce.

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SoulPatrol32's picture

January 15 is the deadline I believe. 

Keep fighting CalPoppy

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BrutusB's picture

September 1.  If you don't see someone out there, he might not be on the team anymore.

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UrbanBuckeye's picture

If he can develop the natural feel/instincts at LB, then he could be a fantastic pro. Athleticism is there for sure. Best of luck!

Harbaugh puts ketchup on his steak.

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SoulPatrol32's picture

Thank you for the memories Jerome!! Good luck in the NFL and look forward to you being a great player. 

Keep fighting CalPoppy

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labuck's picture

Im thinking Harrison-Borland-Browning

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GoNutz27's picture

Good for him.  LB will be a weakness for the defense next year.  Need some of these top rated youngsters to step up... or maybe get better coaching. ;)

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buckeyenut74's picture

I disagree on it being a weakness next year

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iowabuckeyes's picture

The back seven will be slightly green but stellar. LB may be our deepest position. With lack of depth at DE, it will be interesting to see what, if anything, Schiano/Grinch/Davis do differently with the OLBs, i.e., a sort of hybrid 4-3 but with an OLB playing as a standup DE? I wouldn’t mind seeing what Browning and Harrison out there together as taller, leaner bookends gives us.

I think it’s a good move by Baker. He’ll test off the charts at the combine and I don’t know that he’d improve his draft position if he stuck around. Top 5 among LBs is pretty damn good.

"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke

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Nick's picture

Barring injuries we are good at DE and wouldn't want to take them off the field, we just won't have enough to be the whole DL.

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Sanantonefan's picture

I think we'll be okay. Harrison got better as the season went on and I think will take the next step next year.

Borland showed a real knack for the middle.

Browning, Keandre Jones, and Werner will push to start. Maybe Justin Hilliard will reach his potential.

Plus, we have some talented folks coming in.

Hopefully Billy Davis will take the next step as a coach. Sure do miss Fickell though. However, I remember the #firefickell days.

You Got Barbecue Back There!?!?!?!

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bd2999's picture

Inexperience is there but so is talent. Given the struggles at the spot this year in some games I imagine some infusion of new guys could be a boon too. Loads of talent to bring into those spots and see how they do.

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Icouldnotgofor3's picture

Saban on a cart eating cold pizza

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BTBuckeye's picture

Go get it Bake! Thanks for all your hard work! 

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Barfolomew's picture

Good luck Mr. Baker, thanks for the memories

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HandsOfSweed's picture

Hey, who the hell let Baker Mayfield in here? All he's gonna do is douche the place up. Nice DV, Bake.

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toad1204's picture

Perhaps we can fill his spot with a Solo.... 

The offseason is the longest season.

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jamesrbrown322's picture

I'm happy for him and hope he's an instant impact rookie. However, I really had some high hopes that he'd be back as he stands to drastically improve his Draft stock by demonstrating more discipline in pass coverage next season. The guy has serious upside and I love that he gets to fulfill his dreams, but I'll miss him wearing the S&G.

"Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed, is more important than any other one thing." - Abraham Lincoln

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NHBuckeye's picture

Go get paid my man!  Thanks for all you've done at OSU.  Once a Buckeye, always a Buckeye.

Fields of Dreams

 

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RunEddieRun1983's picture

Thank you JB for everything! Ohio born and bread! Go get em!

Urban Meyer left an incredible legacy. 12/4/18 Ryan Day begins his.

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NoFancyUserName's picture

I love bread from Ohio!!

You're either at the table, or on the menu!!

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El_Heffe's picture

Best of luck Mr. Baker, thanks for everything. 

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buckgrad04's picture

Meh, think we have better linebackers waiting.  Hoping for Jones and Campbell to stick around for 1 more year.

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Elks' comb over's picture

Congrats to him! Also a congrats knowing that the Browns will never draft you.

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iowabuckeyes's picture

I watched Draft Day this weekend. I told my wife that the first clue it’s fictional is the Browns drafted a guy from Ohio State.

"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke

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Elks' comb over's picture

Lol. I can't believe that no one has tried to make an updated version of Major League for the Browns.

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Browns88's picture

Any word on Sheffield potentially declaring for draft?

Browns88

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ChazBuckeye's picture

Considering it's an article and subsequent comment section for Jerome Baker, probably not.
And yep....it was me....

It is time!!!!!

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Dillon G's picture

Over/under on his 40 at the combine? All I know is the fat linebackers of the SEC will be way behind.

#walkaway

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CLEbuck96's picture

He was amazing against TTUN in 2016 and Wisconsin this year in the Big Ten Championship. I hope he is great in the NFL!

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I'm Ron Burgundy's picture

Crazy thing about the Wisconsin game is had about 1/4 of his season's tackles that game.  Which tells how great he played that game, and just how lackluster he was leading up to it for the entire season.

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LoufromOSU's picture

Yep, definitely a 2 game season for him.  Finished well.  Probably enough tape to warrant a 2nd round pick on if he does well at the combine/pro day.  A certain team who likes to draft OSU players may need to fill a huge spot in their linebacking core under unfortunate circumstances, and he could be that guy.   

"Great moments are born from great opportunities."  - Herb Brooks

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Buck68's picture

best games in last 2017 B1G biggest games = finished strong.

Buck68

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buckeyeinWI's picture

Good luck in 'the league' Jerome.

next man up...

GO BUCKEYES!

16-2 is SWEET!

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ChristopherBarnhouse's picture

Good luck ! Tough sport, make that paper while you can !

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GoDamnBucks's picture

I’ll wish him well but he’s not ready. I wonder if any coach told him that? Great upside, but still raw.

My Blood runs Scarlett and Grey

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Dan Hope's picture

Baker was candid all year in acknowledging that he did not play up to his own expectations this year and needed to improve. Something important to keep in mind, though, is that Baker has a young daughter. Even if he felt like another year at Ohio State could have improved his draft stock, going pro and getting paid still might have been the best decision for him.

ChazBuckeye's picture

I agree...
Unless we're in their shoes, we have no idea why they make these decisions. But I'd bet my bottom dollar Dan's right. Having mouths to feed makes this a fairly easy decision.

It is time!!!!!

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RBurgundy4's picture

Well, I guess your instincts were correct on this one, Dan. Here's a +1 from me. I didn't think that he played particularly well until the final 3 games and that would keep him around for another year. This is a mild suprise to me, but eh...
Best wishes, JB.

#CalpoppyStrong

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BuckNutChicago's picture

Go

Get

The

Money!

Good luck Bake!  Makes us proud!!

Go Buckeyes!!!

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Keze's picture

Money talks

sad but true.

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ChazBuckeye's picture

It's a really good AC/DC song...

It is time!!!!!

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GoNutz27's picture

And a pretty good Metallica song... 

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brutus0717's picture

Best of luck Jerome, and thank you. Buckeye for life.

"We gotta go win this next game and make the State of Ohio proud!"-UFM

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IBLEEDSCARLETANDGRAY's picture

Baker cost himself some draft stock this season. If he had played well vs. OU and Iowa he'd be a 1st round pick. He wont go as high as Raekwon did last year but he wont fall out of the 2nd round.

"You're the patron saint of the totally effed" - Hot Tub Time Machine

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buckerew's picture

Booker/Harrison could get some reps at DE.

Depth isn't very good at that position

Buckeye since 1952.

Go Bucks!

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I'm Ron Burgundy's picture

Definitely think that should be considered for Booker.  He just hasn't looked like he has the instincts for LB, for whatever reason.  But I think he has just enough size to be a situational pass rusher.  Seems like we have more depth at LB, I'm all for it.

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Crumb's picture

Another Buckeye rides off into the Ohio sunset. Good luck, Baker. Will root for you no matter where you land in the NFL!

"The only good thing about it is winning the d*** thing" - Urban Meyer on The Game The War

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BuckNutChicago's picture

Once a Buckeye, always a Buckeye!

Go Buckeyes!!!

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GranvilleBuck's picture

I am sorry I would get a down vote.  I don't disparage Mr. Baker.  Good for him.  Best of luck.   I watched the games, and he seemed to take many plays off this year.  If that insults you , I am sorry.  I think he is a good player, and " Good Bye " to him.  

We will be fine...

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okiebuck's picture

Jeez, these DV’s seem to be spreading like the flu; WTH people??

The only hard day was yesterday

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BuckeyeinFlorida's picture

Best of luck with anything you try young man. Hoping the future goes great and you have much fun.

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jimmybuckeye's picture

Harrison, Borland and Browning

Hope Hilliard gets some extended playing time.  Think Werner is a Meyer favorite.

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Barnsey69's picture

Thank you sir, it was a pleasure watching you play.

Go Bucks!

Thank the Maker that I was born in Ohio, cradle of coaches, US Presidents, confederate-stomping Generals, and home of The Ohio State University Football Buckeyes- 2014 UNDISPUTED National Champions!

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Buckabroad's picture

Sorry to see Baker go. Great player, great Buckeye. Will be a valuable, athletic addition to an NFL team. 

"The minute we stop expecting greatness, we become Wisconsin."

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ChazBuckeye's picture

Good luck J Baker! Had a feeling that would happen, but now it's next man up. Mr. Browning, come on down!

It is time!!!!!

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actionstanleyjackson's picture

Browning will be a starter 

Stay golden, Ponyboy.

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mockjocks's picture

Baker has a ton of talent, when he wants to show it. He’s got the tools to be a good one in the NFL. Stay on your grind, kill the combine, and go get yours.

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VanillaStache's picture

CLE Boys in the building!

"Let me quote the late great Cornel Sanders, I'm to drunk to taste this chicken"

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ToTheHouse's picture

JB thanks for the on & off the field quality time given to OSU, & hopefully being a Buck will assure you the next level you seek.

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stxbuck's picture

Good luck. I'd like to see him stripes-the Bengals kind. He really stepped up his game in post-season-B10 Championship/Cotton Bowl.

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Buckfrombirth's picture

Good for Jerome and GOOD LUCK! Load the next Silver Bullet.

I survived Cooper, and I hate Tai Streets.

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bucknutz18's picture

Dude is gonna light up the combine.  He played at times terrible this season (self-admitted) but showed at the end of the season he still has it.  I'll be shocked if he makes it past the second round.  

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dwcbuckeye's picture

Good luck to him.  IMO the prudent move would be to come back and ball out with an excellent opportunity to earn many millions more.  He can still do that in the next NFL contract

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kmp10's picture

I think any payer who will be drafted before the end of the third round is smart to take the leap, generally speaking. Contracts in round three average abut 3 million dollars, with the guaranteed amount being close to 3/4 of a million dollars (about 700k). Baker is a tremendous athlete, because of this he'll almost certainly go before the end of round three and he'll absolutely stick on whatever roster he's drafted onto. Smart move for him... 

When I die, sprinkle my ashes over the 70's 

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tcm1968's picture

My two cents when he gets into NFL interviews just be brutally honest. They are going to want to know why the play dipped from season to season. If it was truly a nagging injury then say so. If it was looking ahead to the NFL and worrying about not getting injured so you could support your daughter then say so. People want to point to coaching but coaching doesn't explain the drop in sideline to sideline speed and the lack of desire to chase down plays. Something changed from last season to this season.

Wish him nothing but the best. Should put up good combine numbers and if he works his tail off should land a mid round draft grade and get paid to do something he loves.

Go Bucks!

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CowCat's picture

It's always bittersweet to see players move on, but that's college football. You can't keep them forever.

Good luck in the NFL, Jerome. Come back and complete your degree.

"We get paid to score touchdowns, not kick field goals"
-- Urban Meyer

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saintstephen11's picture

Wouldn't surprise me at all to see him go in the first round. This season may be used some to evaluate, but mostly it is projection on what he will be like as a pro ... not what he did in college.  If he kills the combine, he could go in the first round.

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Arizona_Buckeye's picture

Sigh - to be expected and I get it - but I still don't have to be happy about it!

The best thing about Pastafarianism? It is not only acceptable, but advisable, to be heavily sauced

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Scarlet_Lutefisk's picture

Thank you for the memories & good luck with the next stage of your life journey Mr Baker.

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Ca114fire's picture

First I wish the man good health and great riches. I think he could have used another year but his potential is great and I hope he retires a scum alum

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BayCountyBuck's picture

In the words of Bill Raftery, "send it in Jerome" go get that paycheck

When I was 6 I was thinking about this rivalry. This one is seared on your soul, It's ingrained through every part of your body. -Urban Meyer

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YoungBuck2019's picture

Remember watching him in high school, was consistently the best athlete on the field, farewell Mr. Baker, looking forward to seeing another Buckeye and Man of Benedictine in the league 

I spend the majority of my school day on 11W

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Knarcisi's picture

Worked out a lot better then being a Gator, didn’t it Jerome?

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brunstar's picture

Best of luck in the NFL, get paid young man.

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bonebuck's picture

We need more depth at LBer. The only solid for sure starter is Tuf. Love the kid. We should all 3 positions locked down as far as who is next. So now we start another year with "wait till the lber's mature" or wait till the DB's come around. Our OL looks good-DL looks good and WR's and RB's all have depth.

If Borland did not get PT due to injury we would be starting 3 new LBer's. Maybe I am missing something.

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Canukbuck's picture

Good kid .... mistake, but I wish him well .....

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DFrelin06's picture

I think due to injuries, Hilliard is flying under the radar right now...But he finished last season strong on special teams. He was a big time recruit, and I wouldn't be the slightest bit surprised to see him starting in Baker's spot next year.

"When you win, say nothing. When you lose, say less" - Paul Brown

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