By Kirsta Pirtle
As Baylor students were waking up to frigid temperatures and no electricity, hoping to find class cancellation e-mails on their phones, four-star recruit Spencer Drango had already signed his national letter of intent for Baylor, the first signee of the day.
Drango, a 6-foot-6, 264-pound offensive tackle from Cedar Park has had Baylor on his mind since July 2010; however, after Jan. 21, when five-star offensive line recruit Christian Westerman jumped ship from the University of Texas to Auburn, Texas came knocking at Drango’s door.
Texas might not have really affected his decision on Baylor, seeing as Drango turned down offers from top schools such as Arkansas, California, Louisiana State and Stanford, but the fact that his childhood team was calling turned the tables.
Drango’s friend and teammate, Chet Moss, had already committed to Texas and was starting to try and take Drango with him.
“I grew up a UT fan. It was a tough decision, but every time I thought about it, I kept pulling toward Baylor,” Drango said.
Cedar Park head coach Chris Ross could see Drango and Baylor were beginning to fit together quite nicely.
“I believe he chose Baylor because it fits what he wants out of life,” Ross said. “His brother goes there, and their staff did a tremendous job recruiting him and making him feel like part of the Baylor family.”
This relationship was the factor that kept Drango with Baylor.
Late Friday, Drango made the call to University of Texas assistant coach Stacy Searels, declining their offer.
Since that point, both Drango and Baylor Nation knew that today was going to be a big day.
Drango was ranked No. 15 among offensive linemen in the nation by ESPN.com, named “Best Offensive Lineman” in the state by Dave Campbell’s Texas Football Winter 2011.
“He’s a winner on and off the field,” Ross said. “He was the unanimous captain of our team and was All-State athletically and academically.”
It only made sense that Drango would be the first to sign, being one of the top recruits this season for Baylor.
When asked why he signed so early, he simply responded that he was up anyways.
Such excitement leads to the thoughts of Drango’s potential in the next four years.
His quick feet and long arms are great assets that cannot be coached, but his weight might not be enough for now to hold off the size of the Big 12 opposing defensive linemen.
This problem is nothing to worry about; Drango is a dedicated player who knows there is still room for improvement, amongst his astounding list of accolades.
Baylor head coach Art Briles was pleased to have Drango officially commit to Baylor.
“Our job as coaches is always to evaluate from a positive and improvement standpoint, and we are having a hard time finding anything that he is not already up to speed on,” Briles said. “He has it all; size, strength, purpose and great mental attitude as far as approaching the game and his academics. He is going to be a great leader for us. We are very excited Spencer is with us.”
Ross added that he could not be any prouder of Drango and the player and person he is becoming.
“He [Drango] is a tremendous person,” Ross said. “The best football player I’ve ever coached. Not only is he great, but he makes his teammates better as well.”