Biographical Details: 5’10″ 195lbs – St Patrick’s [Ottawa, ON] plus Cumberland Panthers of the OVFL & Ottawa Sooners of the CJFL
Position: DB – Baines will be a defensive half rather than a corner. Could he transition to Sam LB like his brother did? Or even move to safety? Possibly. Learning a new position isn’t foreign to Baines. In his last year of high school, he played QB, a position he had never played before, and did it well enough to lead St Pats to the Ottawa semi-final.
Honours: Baines was a Team Ontario East starter at the 2011 Canada Cup in Lethbridge. In a league with players up to 22-yrs old he was named the Ottawa Sooners’ Defensive Player of the Year as an 18-yr old rookie. IIRC in the OVFL he was named Special Teams Player of the Week for an incredible performance that included a 100+ yard return TD. In 2012 Baines finished 2nd in the OFC in punt return yards even though he didn’t return a punt until week 4. He averaged an amazing 22 yards per punt return.
My Take: I would classify Baines as a hard-hitting and physical player more than the speedy, athletic type. But you can’t do what he did in the return game without a large measure of speed and athleticism. Baines will have a big reputation to live up to as brother Jarryd finished his career as the Gryphon’s Defensive MVP in 2012. Riley will enter the program physically ready to play as he is already as big as Jarryd was in 5th year.
From a comment about Riley Baines before he committed to Guelph: 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.