Adam Flagler’s Path to Waco | How Baylor Was Built

Adam Flagler, 6-3, 180, G, Soph. (Duluth, Ga.)
Transferred: May 6, 2019

Coming out of Duluth High as an under-the-radar prospect, Adam Flagler carried a single Division I scholarship offer: Presbyterian.

Flagler hooped for a smaller AAU outfit run by his father, and says he played well, but the knock was his size and athleticism. “I could shoot the ball and score,” Flagler said, “but teams were hesitant to pull the trigger.”

Playing for the Blue Hose, Flagler was the Big South Freshman of the Year after leading the team in scoring at 15.9 points per game two seasons ago. He had 29 points at UCLA, 20 at Marquette and 20 at Dayton. So when his name came across the transfer portal, following a coaching change in which Dustin Kerns left for Appalachian State, Scott Drew and the Bears staff began watching tape.

“We didn’t know anything about him,” Drew admitted. “I had never heard of him.”

“The first time I heard about him was on your list of top transfer rankings,” Baylor assistant John Jakus told me. “We had gotten MaCio the year before from the same league, and the analytics were impressive. He shot the ball well, but we knew playing with our guards, those numbers would be even better.”

Drew was quickly impressed watching Flagler, who made 108 trifectas as a freshman and shot 84 percent from the charity stripe. But there were about 25 schools in pursuit this time. It got to the point where Flagler handed his cell phone to his parents for a weekend.

“I couldn’t do it any more,” Flagler said. “I was overwhelmed.”

Flagler said he got a call from a ‘254’ area code while he was in class. He stepped out and it was Jakus.

“The first question was about my faith,” Flagler recalled. “Presbyterian is a religious school, but nowhere near as big as Baylor. He asked basketball questions, but also about my family. We clicked on all cylinders.”

But Flagler was sold on his visit to Waco, one in which he went up against Jared Butler, Davion Mitchell and MaCio Teague in a workout and couldn’t muster a bucket.

“From then on, I knew that it was the place to be for me to improve my game,” Flagler said.

That workout also left an impression on Butler, who signed off on Flagler with the coaching staff.

“He’s a Baylor kid. He fits with us,” Butler said. “And he’s going to get better.”

Flagler sat out last season, practicing each and every day against Butler, Mitchell and Teague. This season he’s been an integral part of the Bears’ success, averaging 10.2 points off the bench while shooting 44 percent from 3-point range.

“We guessed right on him,” Jakus admitted.

“I came here to get better and to win,” Flagler said. “And now I’m doing both.”