Tuesday, May 1, 2012
OU, K-State stand out to Stanvon Taylor
By Bob Przybylo
The last couple of months have seen interest pick up dramatically for four-star athlete Stanvon Taylor (Tulsa, Okla./East Central). But in the last week, things have hit an all-time high.
It began Monday with a scholarship offer from the Oklahoma Sooners. And it ended with a better than expected experience in Manhattan, Kan., for the Kansas State spring game.
“This last week has definitely been a lot different than some of the other weeks,” Taylor said. “It has been real exciting, and I’m having a lot of fun.”
In-state cornerback Stanvon Taylor said receiving an Oklahoma offer was 'special.'
The Wildcats were one of the first teams to offer Taylor. And though some expected him to verbally commit to OU once he got the offer, he wanted to see what KSU had to offer as he had never seen the campus before. As it turns out, the Wildcats did everything they could to make Taylor feel at home. Taylor said they stressed being a part of a family.
Though none of his former teammates are on the roster, KSU has eight Oklahoma high school products on the team and five from the Tulsa area, including former Tulsa (Okla.) Booker T. Washington stars defensive back Dante Barnett and wide receiver/kick returner Tyler Lockett.
“I had a real good time with those guys,” Taylor said. “I’ve been playing with them for years, and they didn’t have anything bad to say about the program.”
K-State made Taylor one of its top priorities, while the Sooners elected to wait to offer. Though OU never doubted Taylor’s ability on the field, there were health concerns. Taylor broke his ankle in the first game of last season and never played another snap. Taylor was on Oklahoma’s radar, but the OU staff needed more time to evaluate him.
That ended last Monday when he was offered. Taylor said he was close to committing last week, but he needed to make sure his mother was on board. She spoke to OU coaches Bob Stoops and Jackie Shipp last week and the result was good news for Sooners fans.
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“They spoke when I was in school, but it was a real positive talk,” Taylor said. “My mom was real happy with everything.”
Taylor’s mother stressed patience last week, wanting to make sure her son didn’t break his promise of visiting Kansas State. With that no longer an obstacle, a commitment could come at any time with Taylor. But he insists he's in no rush.
“I’ve been talking with my family and my coaches, and everybody is telling me to take my time, to not rush into anything,” he said.
The recruiting process hasn't slowed down for Taylor. Coaches from Texas and Notre Dame were among the first teams to reach out to him when the spring evaluation period started. He has more than 10 offers, including Texas Tech, Arizona State and Indiana, among several others, but there was just something different about receiving an offer from the Sooners.
“That feeling I had last week about OU being special hasn’t gone away,” Taylor said. “Right now OU and Kansas State are my two favorites, no doubt about it.”
Shipp is expected to be at the first spring practice for Tulsa East Central on May 14.