For the third time in nine days, the Tar Heels have added a member to the 2020 class. The addition was something that the staff believed was the biggest remaining need in this stacked class, as 2020 3✮ OT Cayden Baker committed to Carolina on Sunday night to address the need on the offensive line.
Baker, the No. 99 offensive tackle in 2020 class according to 247Sports Composite, gives the Tar Heels their third offensive lineman in the class and some added depth at offensive tackle. Baker was on campus yesterday for his official visit and heading into the visit the belief was that if everything went well, he would commit shortly afterward, which is exactly what proceeded to happen. Baker is a senior at Fort Myers High School in Fort Myers, FL where he starts at both offensive tackle, a spot he started at for four years at his prior stop, and defensive tackle. In nine games this season, Baker has 26 total tackles and 7.5 sacks. Prior to his time at Fort Myers, Baker was a two-way standout as a offensive tackle and defensive tackle for Southwest Florida Christian in Fort Myers, finishing with 130 total tackles, 23.0 tackles for loss and 16.5 sacks in four seasons at the varsity level, including two games that he played as an eighth grader. Baker spent his junior year at Southwest Florida Christian at tight end, where he caught 16 passes for 144 yds and one touchdown.
Baker is still a bit of a raw player with this being his first full year at tackle, but there is a lot of upside with this young man. If you like athletic tackles, you’ll love Baker’s film. Baker is able to get downfield for blocks with relative ease and could be very valuable in pull blocking and screen blocking scenarios. Baker is athletic, but he still has good size on him at 6’7, 275 lbs.. The staff will likely want to get him over the 300 lbs. mark where almost all of the major contributors on the Tar Heel offensive line are at, but Brian Hess should have no problem getting him there when he gets on campus. The biggest concern just based off of his tape is the fact that he has not had many pass protection reps this season, but as we’ve seen before, that doesn’t necessarily mean he is not a good pass protector. It might take time for Baker to get involved when he arrives on campus, but there is a good ceiling that Tar Heels fans should be excited about for this young man.
The commitment gives the Tar Heels 25 commitments in the 2020 class, which is regarded by many as a full class. That doesn’t necessarily mean the Tar Heels are done in this class, though, and 2020 4✮ DUAL Jacolby Criswell’s tweet after Baker’s commitment saying fans will be excited about the next two commitments. The Tar Heels 2020 class still remains 18th overall and 4th in the ACC in the 247Sports Composite team rankings, but they just continue to close in on a group of teams who are bunched up ahead of them.