A member of the 2008 recruiting class, Jarryd Baines has had a stellar career as a Gryphon. No surprise then that his video highlights would be impressive. If you have watched much Gryphon football in the past 3 or 4 years you’ll know that when the opposition puts the ball on the ground you will usually find Baines close by. Whether he’s knocking it loose with a jarring hit, ripping it out or just picking it off, Baines has made big plays. Aside from 51 tackles [32 solo, 19 assts] his official 2012 stats include 4 forced fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries, 3 INTs and 3 pass break-ups.
But perhaps the most important turnover he produced on the year he didn’t even get credit for. With Guelph maintaining a slim lead over an inspired Laurier team playing their best game of the year in front 9,200 Homecoming fans, Baines made a huge play, stripping a Golden Hawk receiver of the ball and recovering the fumble at Guelph’s 11-yd line. Laurier’s biggest offensive play of the game [at the 0:40 second mark] went for naught.
It will be tough to replace what Baines and other veterans brought to this team. But in Baines’ case the Gryphons stand a chance of recruiting a “clone” – his younger brother Riley. Riley Baines is very much a player in Jarryd’s mould as you can see from his highlights – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HSK6tvtXRhw. I don’t usually say anything about recruits before they have announced a decision but having gotten to know Tim & Kelly Ann Baines (parents) and Bruce & Mabel Martin (grandparents) I hope that they have a new reason to attend Gryphon games, tailgates, dinners and other events.