Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Taylor-Made For The Next Level

Aspects of Mike Taylor’s game and mentality have changed for the better after a long summer on the AAU circuit.

The 6-foot-3 guard from Boys And Girls HS has shed his me against the world complex.

He’s shot less and dished more, buying into the we-before-me philosophy.

The result?

A laundry-list of Division-I schools have been hounding the sharpshooter throughout the country.

Offers from St. John’s, Providence, Indiana and Pittsburgh are on the table.

West Virginia and Maryland have also ratcheted up their interest level the past few months.

“In the beginning of the summer, he took a lot of shots,” explained Metro Hawks 16U head coach Paul Ruddock.

“He thought everything had to be on him. Then, he started buying into the team concept. He started to put the ball on the floor a lot better, he’s become better on the rebounds and a better passer.”

Taylor, who was feast-or-famine at times last season, also became more consistent over the summer.

His quick evolution as the Metro Hawks leading scorer and top player seemed to instill a new confidence in the young gun.

“He definitely averaged at least 25 points or better (this summer),” said Ruddock.

This season, Taylor will be flushed into more of a leadership role under coach Ruth Lovelace.

“His maturity has improved big time,” said Ruddock. “He knows he’s got schools that want him. It’s just a matter of Mike going out on the floor and getting it done. His scholarship offers speak for themselves.”

Which school is going the hardest?

“Honestly, they’re all really moving at the same speed right now,” Ruddock said.

With his individual totals an afterthought and winning now the primary concern, expect Taylor’s stock to keep growing, growing, growing. Jack and the beanstalk style.

“He’s better defensively also,” said Ruddock.

“He’s really just made winning his top priority and added to his all-around game.”