After watching Jerel Worthy leave Michigan State with the blessings of Spartans head coach Mark Dantonio, junior running back Edwin Baker took a different approach on Friday.
Baker, a native of Highland Park, Michigan leaves with one year of eligibility remaining and without the ecstatic support Dantonio showed Worthy.
“He wants me back and said he’d love to have me back,” Baker told the Associated Press by phone. “But it’s my decision. I just feel I’m ready.”
After a strong sophomore season that saw Baker rush for 1,201 yards, Baker fell behind Le’Veon Bell in 2011 as the Spartans featured back by mid-season and ended the year with 655 yards on 164 carries and five touchdowns.
While some will speculate Baker’s reasons for leaving the Spartans after a subpar season, he stressed to the Associated Press the fear of injury played a major role.
“I’m healthy now and I don’t want to get injured my senior year,” Baker continued. “I could come back and have a worse year.”
The loss of Baker will mean back-up running backs Larry Caper and Nick Hill will have more chances in the spring and could see the Spartans rethink their position on taking a second running back in the class of 2012.
SpartanDigest.com wishes Baker the best in the next step of his career.