Waco (TX), Midway
Weight 194 pounds
Other Scholarship Offers:
Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, LSU, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, TCU, Tennessee, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, USC
Under the Helmet:
When did you know that you could play football at a high level?
About my sophomore year. I transferred to Midway from University and the coaches asked me to play both sides of the ball. I told them I had never played defense, but I would give it a shot. After I went through two-a-days, my safeties coach, David Petroff, told me I could be a high level, major player if I kept working hard and kept doing what I was doing.
Who is your all-time favorite player?
I've always said Ed Reed. He's been my favorite player the longest because he is a ballhawk and I've always tried to model my game after him. Now, though, I think Eric Berry might end up being my all-time favorite player. He's kind of a smaller guy but he gets the job done no matter how or where you want him to play, and he does it to the best of his ability.
Do you have any role models?
My youngest brother. He's more of a inspiration for me than a role model, though. He was born with a hole in his heart and as a baby had eight surgeries. He was never able to play sports because of it, but he has been to every sporting event I've ever played in my whole life.
How often do you work out and what is your routine?
I do more running than lifting. I run everyday and lift about three to four times a week. I feel like you can lift all day and be the strongest man in the world, but without endurance none of that matters.
Do you have a pregame ritual or anything you are superstitious about?
I really just say a prayer before every game. I'm not superstitious about anything.
A look ahead:
What position will you play at Baylor?
They haven't told me specifically, but I know I'll either be at strong or free safety.
Do you plan to redshirt?
If that's what the coaches want, I'll do what is best for the team.
What is your biggest strength as a player?
My aggressiveness and ability to get to the ball. I think I developed my aggression by always staying focused. When I know what I'm doing, I can be more aggressive and play better. My ball hawking comes from lots and lots of film.
What is the biggest thing you need to work on?
Coming out of my back pedal and my hips. I think it's because I'm more of a lengthy guy, so I have to work extra hard on those two things because of that.
Which number do you want to wear at Baylor?
Six. No particular reason other than the fact that Antonio Johnson wore seven. I've known him since he moved here from Lufkin and we're real tight. He's kind of a big brother type to me.
What do you plan on majoring in while at Baylor?
Criminal justice. I've always wanted to do technology detective work.
What do you see yourself doing fifteen years from now?
Hopefully I'll be at my hall of fame NFL ceremony and will go onto being a high school coach, maybe even at Midway.
What are your goals for 2010?
Personally I want to play my freshman year hopefully earn some type of individual freshman award. As a team, my goal is to win the Big 12 and to beat Texas, of course.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
Other than working out, I like to play video games like Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto, Madden and NCAA, and also just sitting around watching football movies and clips. I like to visualize myself making big plays and getting myself in the football state of mind.
What is your favorite food?
What kind of music do you listen to?
I don't listen to just one type. However I'm feeling, I just listen to that. Artists, as far as rap goes, I'd say T.I. would be my personal favorite. If I'm just reaching for something, that's probably what it will be.
Do you have a nickname?
People usually call me Big Dixon. When I'm out of town, though, everyone calls me "Waco." I don't know how I got that name, but it stuck out of town.
A look back:
What one thing made you decide to go to Baylor?
The one thing that through all the blogs and media stuff, Baylor never asked me what was going on, they never told me to do this or that, and just asked me straight up if I was still committed to Baylor. Any other school might have just taken my scholarship, but Baylor never left me out to dry and always took me at my word. That's how I knew they were honest people and wanted to go there.
When did you know you wanted to go to Baylor?
I had known for a while, but I never knew for sure if that was just because I lived in Waco. I knew that I wanted to go there, but I was really just procrastinating because I was listening to what other people were telling me. I knew for sure when I remember that there's nothing like playing in front of your hometown.
Did any other schools come in last minute to try and sway you?
Oklahoma State came in probably two weeks before signing day and USC came in around the same time. When I went on my visit to OSU, I realized it wasn't the place for me. When I got there, the airline lost my luggage and I had to buy new clothes. It was like some sign telling me that I belonged in Waco, not Stillwater.
Which coaches did you become the closest with during the recruiting process?
Really and truly, I would say Coach Briles. I had known Coach Norwood long before that and it was my relationship with Briles that really grew that whole time. I have such a major respect for him now. He was always direct and honest with me through the Texas Tech situation, the visits, and everything else.
Did the Baylor coaches do anything unique when recruiting you?
They didn't come at me like other schools. They didn't try to big dog me or bad mouth any other schools, they just came at me as Baylor. We never even talked about any other schools, we just talked about Baylor. They didn't start making promises that I'll get this or that, they were just always honest about what Baylor is and what it brings.
What was your favorite moment during the recruiting process?
The night before signing day, that was the best night for me. That was the night I realized what was in front of me and had going for me and knew that Baylor was where I needed to be.
Did you hit it off with any particular current players or incoming freshman?
I already knew Tyler Stephenson really well, so it would have to be Kendal Wright. We talked at least twice a week, and we still keep in touch a lot.
Do you have a message for the Baylor fans
My message is that we're going to get that bowl game.
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