Sam Webb: Back in Ann Arbor, what was this experience like for you?
Garrett Taylor: “It was awesome. We definitely had a great time. I definitely had fun. I met all the commits and some of the recruits… and it was just good to be back. I got back in touch with all the coaches. It was nice. It felt good to be back on campus. I haven’t been there in awhile since March, so being back on campus felt really good. I talked to Coach Hoke and I talked to Coach Manning. So, everything went really well. It was just a fun time.”
Sam Webb: Who were the guys, be they current players, or recruits, or commitments, that you spent the most time with.
Garrett Taylor: “I know I spent some time with Jabrill Peppers and I got in contact with Ian Bunting. I spent some time with him and Brandon Watson and some of the current players. In terms of recruits, the one guy I spent pretty much the entire time is Marcus Lewis. We definitely talked a bunch. He was hanging out with me the entire day and the night before, while we were staying with the players. He and I had a great time. I talked to Darian Roseboro and Jalen Bates, I hung out a lot. As far as a commit, I was Alex (Malzone) a lot, Darrin (Kirkland), Tyree (Kinnel), all them. I had a lot of fun.”
Sam Webb: You mentioned Marcus. I talked to Marcus and first of all, he talked a lot about you. He says you guys really connected. He said that Michigan is at the top of his list now. Did you get that impression while he was here, that Michigan had moved up that much with him?
Garrett Taylor: “I could tell. It was funny because like the entire time we were touring around at Michigan, kind of had that star struck look on his face. He was going around like wow, this is amazing, I really like it here. He loved all the coaches. He was raving about how cool all the coaches were. He told me that he was really having a good time and that he really liked it there. I definitely caught that from him and I’m not surprised at all.”
Sam Webb: He also mentioned that he spent some time with Jabrill. What was your interaction with Jabrill like? It seems like he is the guy who made a real impression on you guys.
Garrett Taylor: “Yeah, he is a really funny guy. He is real down to earth. He is someone that you kind of want to be around. He’s funny. It’s hard to explain. He’s easy to talk to. He kind told us about all the stuff they are doing at Michigan, what we needed to do, prepare ourselves and get ourselves ready in terms of football wise and mentally and stuff like that. He gave us a little bit of advice. He frankly took the time to hang out with us, which meant a lot too. He is a busy person, so the fact that he did that was real cool.”
Sam Webb: Marcus was not the only one that mentioned you. When Clark Yarbrough got offered, he heard from you right away. Did you know Clark or was that one of those things were you saw he got offered by Michigan and he was a Virginia guy, so you just hit him up?
Garrett Taylor: “Oh no. I’ve played against him. His school is one of our rivals. I play against him all the time. He’s a great player. He’s kind of about the same thing as me in terms of valuing academics. I knew that as soon as he got that Michigan offer if he took the chance to come up again that he would definitely love it.”
Sam Webb: You mentioned Jalen Bates, you said that you hung out with him a lot. He is not a kid that we’ve heard a lot from. What were your impressions on how he liked Michigan and do you think Michigan is a viable option for him?
Garrett Taylor: “I actually do. I do think that him coming up today definitely helped a lot. He is from Louisiana, so it is not a short trip. The fact that he made it up shows a strong interest. Hanging out with them I could tell, like Marcus, it was all great for him. He had a lot of fun, just hanging out. Him and Marcus were actually on my team, so I got to hang out with them a lot. I sat down with Jalen and he liked Michigan a lot. He said that he is going to have to come back up for a game, probably for an official. We have a shot I can definitely see that. If we get him too that would be great.”
Sam Webb: Your senior season is upon you now, give me an idea of what your team looks like heading into this season, what the outlook for you guys and obviously you’ve been working a lot on your game. What aspects of your game should we expect to see taken to another level this year?
Garrett Taylor: “Our team should be really good. We’ve got a lot of talent coming back especially in the defensive backfield and wide receiver corp. We have a lot of guys coming back, which is good because we’re running a new offense. We’re running a new no huddle offer. We’ve got a new coach and he really knows what he’s doing. He’s doing everything in terms of pushing us in the weight room and stuff like that. He’s getting us ready to win. I think we can definitely make it back to the state championship game if everyone works hard and commits and is all in. I definitely feel like we’ve got that talent. We have a good young quarterback, so the outlook definitely looks good. In terms of my game, the thing for me, I’ve been working out a lot on just getting set. I’ve been working on becoming more explosive, making more of those explosive plays. I’ve been working on my off-man technique. I’ve really been working on that all summer. My footwork is going to be great quicker. I’m not going to waste as much time getting in and out of my breaks. I’m going to be more explosive getting out of breaks. Hopefully make some more plays and create some more turnovers too. I definitely expect to take that to another level. Just going to try to keep getting bigger getting stronger and faster, so I’ll be ready to go play and try to get on the field early at Michigan.”
Sam Webb: Do you get the feeling that this class has a chance to be really really special by the time it’s done?
Garrett Taylor: “Oh yeah definitely. I think people are underestimating it because the way Michigan does their recruiting, they don’t just shove out a ton of offers. They pick and choose and they are real picky about who they offer. The guys that we do offer the guys that actually take the time to come up and visit, definitely see what Michigan is about and want to be a part of it. Alex has done a great job, I’ve been trying my best in terms of recruiting other players. I was with Marcus the whole time. We just got Brian Cole. That’s another huge player. We’re in with Darian Roseboro at the top of his list and now Marcus. We’re not going to have as much commits as everyone else, but the guys that we do get or are going to get, are going to be all top top players. We’re going to have quality across the board.”