Baker one to watch for '14

Bishard 'Budda' Baker (

In the Northwest, there are certain high school programs that just reload. Sheldon and Jesuit are two in the state of Oregon, and Bellevue definitely is one of a handful in the state of Washington that seems to always be able to produce talent year after year.

The latest Wolverine ready to break out is Bishard 'Budda' Baker, a 5-foot-10, 163-pound running back. Before matriculating to Bellevue, he played for the Newport Knights. "My last year they practically gave me the ball almost every game," Baker told "I got 35 touchdowns in 11 games. We played Bellevue in the championship and beat them by a field goal in the last 30 seconds. I got an interception, and the game was over."

Baker open-enrolled in Bellevue, because his sister and older brother went to Bellevue. "I wanted to follow in the family tradition," he said, matter-of-factly.

Budda has high expectations for himself in his first season at BHS, but understands it isn't do-or-die right now. He still has plenty of time to make his mark. "I think I should do pretty good," he said. "I'm not going to get mad if I don't start just because I'm a sophomore. I know other people get mad. But if I have to do it, I'll do it.

"I want to average 100 yards a game, and maybe a touchdown or two. It's high school, so it's going to be hard - but I've got to get through it."

When asked about influences, Baker mentioned a couple of tough runners. "I always liked LaDainian Tomlinson from the San Diego Chargers when I was little. I got the stiff-arm from him. I learned how to stiff-arm from my stepdad (Sylvester 'Juice' Carter) also.

"I also like Chris Polk from U-Dub (Washington). He's not really all that fast, but he's strong as a truck. I saw him in that Nebraska game (Holiday Bowl), and I just loved how he played."

Baker said the home school is the one place that's already on his recruiting radar. "I like U-Dub. It's close to home, and my family would be able to see me play."

For a young player, Budda has his head on straight. The recruiting process is something you can never think about too soon, but Baker is focusing on his studies before anything else.

"I know people don't want people that have bad grades," he said. "If there's somebody with me and I have the better grades they'll probably pick me because they can rely on me because of my grades to be eligible."

RB/DB Bishard Baker: 5'10, 163 lbs. Bench: 240, 40: 4.47

40-yard dash - 4.47

240-pound bench Recommended Stories

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