Baylor’s 2014 recruiting class got another bump Monday when Mesquite Horn defensive tackle Andrew Morris gave his verbal commitment.

The 6-foot-2, 288-pounder is a two-start recruit, according to Rivals.com. His pledge is the third the Bears have received in the past two days after they nabbed Princeton dual-threat quarterback Jourdan Blake and Houston Lamar defensive end Ira Lewis on Sunday. Morris is the 18th overall for this class.

Morris, who recorded 47 total tackles, including five behind the line of scrimmage and 1½ sacks for the 8-4 Jaguars as a junior, was originally committed to Rice, but he changed his mind when he traveled to Waco last week.

“When I took my visit to Baylor, I immediately fell in love,” Morris said. “Rice is a great program. Coach (David) Bailiff and all the coaches are great guys, and it’s a great school. I love all the coaches, but when I saw (Baylor’s) campus, I knew I was truly green and gold.”

What separated the Bears from Rice, Morris said, is they play in a larger conference, and in recent years have also made plenty of appearances on television and in front of a large crowd. The inner workings of the program are also more advanced, in terms of a larger weight room and more high-tech facilities, he said.

“All of the schools I’ve been used to seeing, Baylor was just a notch higher,” Morris said.

The chance to be part of the first recruiting class to play in the new on-campus stadium didn’t hurt matters, either.

“That’s always an extra bonus,” Morris said. “I saw the new stadium being built, and I was just like, ‘wow, it’s huge.’ It’s just an extra place that I can call home.”

Staying in trenches

Morris figures to stay inside on the defensive line, and said he’ll likely begin his career at nose guard.

The chance to help Baylor’s defense rise up the ranks is another aspect he couldn’t pass up.

“Baylor’s defense looks pretty solid,” Morris said. “I saw some of the defensive linemen on my visit. They were going to start workouts the next day, and they look like a solid group of guys. I know (defensive coordinator Phil) Bennett, and I know he plays physical, fast and he expects results.”

Morris is the fourth commit on the defensive line for the 2014 class, but the first listed as a defensive tackle.