PreSeason Check-in: Five-star QB Tyrod Taylor

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Five-star quarterback Tyrod Taylor and the Hampton Crabbers do not take the field for a regular season game until September 8th, but the defending 5A state champions did have their first scrimmage recently. caught up with the 6-2, 200-pound signal caller for his thoughts heading into his final high school season.

“We scrimmaged Booker T and Salem,” Taylor said. “We looked good. The offense looked real good. The defense has to work on some things. We only had a week of two-a-days, but the offense looked real good. We have two or three guys that can really go get the ball. We have Sean Fields, who is a junior, and Brian Gurley. We have Reginald Hicks. He’s 6-5. He’s concentrated on basketball in high school, but he can play.

“We won states last year, but nobody remembers that now. All of my focus is on the season. That’s why I committed to Virginia Tech early.”

Taylor feels like he has improved significantly in one area in particular – reading defenses.

“Doing check-downs and reads,” Taylor replied when asked what he feels most improved in. “That was the big thing I learned from the Elite 11 with the chalk talk and a lot of the classwork we did. Both Salem and Booker T threw different things at me, so I had a chance to see different fronts and make different reads. I was trying to simulate how it would be in college in terms of the mental part of the game. Coach Smith has given me the control to do a lot of different things, too.”

Up next for Hampton is a scrimmage versus Huguenot in Richmond. The scrimmage takes place on Thursday.

“They’re tough. They have some players,” Taylor said. “We’ll be able to gauge where we’re at. They have players and they can hit.”

The Hampton offense may have some new wrinkles this season, especially after head coach Mike Smith watched this past Saturday’s high school game pitting Byrnes High School (S.C.) against Glades Central (FL). Smith paid attention to Byrnes’ Willie Korn, who is another top signal caller recruit in the 2007 class.

“Coach Smith watched that game and saw some stuff that I could possibly do,” Taylor said. “Of course, he thought we could have beaten [Byrnes], too.”


Has recruiting changed since you committed