For almost as long as he can remember, Montezuma-Cortez High School senior Cordell Baer has been a football player. During his time at Cortez Middle School, he was a standout. Shortly after arriving at M-CHS, he became a star.
Now, after inking his name to a National Letter of Intent on Feb. 6, the 6-foot-2 , 210-pound receiver will have an opportunity to compete at the next level when he suits up for Adams State University next fall.
“You always have to think that you want to play at the next level because if not, you’re just another mediocre high school kid who plays football to play football,” Baer said. “It has always been my dream to play at the next level. (Signing with Adams State) is definitely a dream come true.”
Baer’s signing comes on the heels of a solid senior season for the M-CHS football team, during which he had 40 receptions for a team-high 643 yards. Baer also made 44 tackles and registered a team-high seven sacks from his defensive end position and was selected first team all-conference in the Intermountain League.
Although how Baer’s skill set will translate to the college level remains unknown, the senior’s combination of speed and physicality figure to serve him well as he competes against bigger and faster opponents.
“I’m looking forward to making myself better,” Baer said. “I have to work harder to be at that level and earn my spot on the team. I just want to make a difference to the program and contribute in any way that I can.”
Baer will join an Adams State team that finished with a 4-7 overall record and a 4-6 record in the RMAC last season. The team will be under the direction of second-year head coach Josh Blankenship, who won five state titles as a high school coach in Oklahoma before joining Adams State’s program as an offensive coordinator in 2015.
Asked what drew him to the Adams State program, Baer, who also suits up as a member of M-CHS’ varsity basketball team and varsity baseball team, said that the university’s proximity to home and overall environment made a big difference.
“(Adams State) is local. I can have coaches go up there, I can have friends go up there,” Baer said. “Especially since my brother, Coby Baer, is up there, that’s the school that I pursued.”
Flanked by M-CHS head coach Scott Conklin, his father, Alfred Baer, his mother, Lisa Baer, and several school administrators and assistant coaches, Baer smiled as inked his name to a National Letter of Intent and thereby fulfilled one of his long-held dreams.
Among the most likable and hardworking M-CHS athletes in recent memory, Baer’s accomplishments on local athletic fields will never be forgotten even after he departs to play under the bright lights of college stadiums.
“My parents, my brother, my coaches and everybody in this community have made me the person that I am,” Baer said. “I’m forever grateful.”