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What Has Changed In Baylor Football Recruiting
February 11, 2013
Wendell Barnhouse is a nationally-known and respected columnist who has spent over 20 years covering collegiate athletics. He has reported from 25 Final Fours and more than three dozen bowl games and has written about the Big 12 and its schools since the conference's beginning. Barnhouse will be updating the Big 12 Insider on happenings and behind-the-scenes information about the conference.

Brice Cherry of the Waco Tribune-Herald on Baylor's recruiting success under coach Art Briles:

When college football coaches venture out to beat the bushes for recruits, they're selling more than a program. They're selling a school, an entire culture.

To put it another way, they're selling a brand.

For much of the history of the Big 12, Baylor's brand name didn't hold much sway with recruits. The Alabamas, USCs and Texases of the world were the Coca-Colas, Apples and Exxons of the college football shopping mart. Big, massively popular brand names that everyone knows. Baylor, before Art Briles' arrival, was more like generic corn flakes.

Things have changed now. And much of the credit goes to Robert Griffin IIII, Briles said.

"It's entirely different," Briles said. "At the end of 2007, that's when we started recruiting for Baylor, we were recruiting on hope and vision, no question. That's what we had to have. We went after mavericks, guys who are not afraid to go down a path nobody else has been down.

"So now we're dealing with facts. We're dealing with production. And we're dealing with a national brand that is unmatched in some categories, with the RG3 factor. I can talk to a high school junior. As a matter of fact, it happened recently, on the telephone, where all I have to say is '3' and he knows who I'm talking about. That's uncommon."

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