Andrew Billings got his decision in with less than 16 hours to go until national signing day. And after much debate, the four-star defensive tackle from Waco High won't be going very far from home.
The 6-foot-2, 314-pound Billings committed to Baylor over TCU and Texas on Tuesday afternoon. While he had reservations about staying in Central Texas to play his college ball, Billings ultimately felt like Baylor was the best place for him.
“It's where I felt I needed to be,” Billings said. “I just got past staying in Waco. It has everything I need – business and aviation.”
Billings had gone back and forth throughout his recruitment and had several instances where his decision date changed. Even though he was scheduled to make his announcement on a Waco radio station at 3 p.m. today, he didn't make the call in his own mind until the last minute.
“Literally yesterday is when I decided,” Billings said. “I was hard pressed thinking about Baylor or TCU. It was those two.”
One of the things Baylor sold Billings that TCU and Texas didn't was that he could minor in aviation at Baylor. He said that's one of the things that helped make the difference for him.
“It was the aviation part,” Billings said. “Really the support they have there.”
With Billings' commitment Baylor climbs to No. 23 in the 247Sports team rankings. Billings finished the recruiting cycle as the No. 158-ranked prospect in the final Top247. He admitted almost committing to Texas during his official visit in December, but his father told him he needed to weigh all of his options.
“When I wanted to commit he told me to slow down and take it to the end,” Billings said. “So I did.”
With Baylor picking up Billings it's the Bears' third big win over a Big 12 rival in recruiting. Everyone in the region offered five-star wide receiver Robbie Rhodes, and the Bears managed to flip four-star offensive lineman Maurice Porter from Texas Tech yesterday.
In 2012 Art Briles took the Bears to a bowl game for third straight season, the first time in school history that's happened. Briles, his staff and the players within the program sold Billings that something special is brewing in Waco.
“All of the players I talked to influenced my decision,” Billings said. “Coach [Brian] Norwood and Coach Briles. They made me feel real comfortable.”