With his high school graduation having come and gone in the last couple of weeks, Jawaan Taylor is ready to compete when he shows up in Gainesville.
“It feels good to be done with all that stuff,” he said about recently finishing high school. “I’m just ready to move on to the next level. I look forward to going in and getting on the field right away and dominating in the classroom and on the field.”
There is a bit of a change for Taylor since his season ended. The young man has changed his body and has lost some necessary weight to compete. At 6-5.5 and 335 pounds, he plans to drop a few more pounds and instead of guard is going to get in the mix at tackle.
“They wanted me to do guard, but when I went up for the spring game they said they want me to compete at tackle now instead of guard,” Taylor said of the Florida staff. “I played more tackle than guard in high school, so I’m pretty comfortable with either one. Whatever they want me to do I will do it.”
Taylor says he has a leg up at protecting the quarterback.
“My strength… I think it’s my pass protection mostly,” he said. “I want to compete harder in my run blocking because I can always get better there. I feel like I’m a better pass blocker.”
Fellow Cocoa High School teammate and fellow class of 2016 member Chauncey Gardner arrived on campus early at Florida and has been letting Taylor know a little bit about what to expect when he gets here.
“I talked to him a few days ago,” Taylor said. “He’s been telling me about what I need to look forward to doing. He lets me know about stuff that I don’t have in my book. He tells me about all the running and workouts. He says mostly the lifting that we didn’t do in high school is tough. He says as long as I’m in shape I will be good with the running.”
We are a little more than a week away now and the anticipation is great to get t Gainesville.
“I’m looking forward to getting acquainted with everyone and getting up there and have fun,” he said. “I want to learn the campus more, learn the tutoring and teachers. I want to get around my team… stuff like that.
“I don’t see too many hard parts. I’ll be working my way from the bottom to the top. That will be the hardest part. Other than that I just need to work hard every day.”
As for what we can expect from Taylor as a Gator…
“They will see a kid that came in ready to play right away and is a good electrifying player that always goes fast and strong,” he said.