RECRUITING: Taylor Will Take 1st Unofficial Visit

Don't let the looks of big Phillip Taylor catch you off guard. Beneath the huge exterior of this 6-4, 340-pound defensive tackle from Brandywine (MD) Gwynn Park is a thoughtful giant ready to get his football and academic career underway. He has a list of schools that he's carefully studying and one is likely to get a visit in the next couple of weeks.

(Phillip Taylor profile)

While most rising star seniors have their focus on playing right away or even playing for a championship caliber team, Taylor's focus is in the pages of both the playbook and a physics text book.

"My number one thing when I'm looking at a school right now is education," Taylor said. "When I go on visits, I want to see athlete graduation rates and I want to major in applied kinesiology."

Taylor is gearing up for his senior season by hitting the weight room as hard as a 340-pounder can --- and in his case that's plenty hard. Gwynn Park is looking to make a run at a state championship to the training is a very serious matter for him and his teammates.

"Right now we're doing a lot of conditioning and running on a daily basis," he said. "Team-wise we just want to win that state championship and I have only one personal goal for this year --- to be the guy who takes us there and puts us through that door. Stats and honors don't mean a thing to me if our team isn't successful."

Recruiting is slowly heating up for Taylor who at this point has only visited the hometown Maryland Terrapins. With this in mind, he remains wide open and he is in no rush to make a decision before thoroughly checking out all the schools on his list in person.

"Maryland, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Florida, Georgia, Miami, Penn State and Oklahoma are just a few of the schools I'm looking at right now," he said. "I'm pretty much wide open."

Florida Wide Receivers Coach Billy Gonzalez recruits Maryland for the Gators. He has been staying on top of Taylor since he arrived in Gainesville. Taylor says the two have developed a pretty good relationship.

Taylor told that he will soon have his bags packed and ready to check out Hogtown.

"I think right now I'm planning on going to Florida in late July on the 22nd," Taylor said. "If I can't make it to that, I'd definitely like to take an unofficial there before the school season starts."

Despite not having seen what the Gators have to offer in terms of atmosphere, Taylor is excited to see what the orange and blue have to offer.

"I've heard so much about playing in The Swamp and the atmosphere that they have down there so that's a definite plus," Taylor said. "Coach (Urban) Meyer is a great guy who has accomplished a lot in very little time so I look forward to continue keeping in contact with him."

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