Notre Dame joined a growing list of suitors when it offered three-star wide receiver Kolby Taylor of Chander (Ariz.) on Tuesday evening.
“I have been getting mail from them for a while,” Taylor said. “But actually, I’ve only talked to coach (Todd) Lyght a couple times before this on Twitter. I got the message to call him (Tuesday) night, and that’s when he offered.
“He told me that he loved my character and loved how high my GPA (3.9) is. He said the Notre Dame coaches like how I’m a playmaker and how I get yards after the catch. He said I can play inside or outside receiver and not many players can do that.”
The 5-foot-11, 186-pound wide out has grown up around football – his father, Keith Taylor, played in the NFL for nine seasons. His oldest brother Kerry played wide receiver at Arizona State and is currently a NFL free agent. His brother Kendyl signed with Washington State in 2012 before transferring to Northern Arizona last year.
His familiarity with the game is one reason why Notre Dame resonates strongly to Taylor.
“Notre Dame is a big time program,” Taylor said. “When you think of college football, it’s one of the programs that you think of. I love their gold helmets, and they’re always on TV because of their contract with NBC. One of my uncles went to Notre Dame, and he talks about it all of the time.”
Three schools stand out early to Taylor, who has offers from Arizona State, Illinois, Louisville, Missouri, Nevada, Northwestern, Oregon State, Utah and Hawaii, in addition to Notre Dame.
“My top three is Arizona State, Oregon State and Northwestern,” Taylor said. “ASU is the local school and I’ve been there a few times. I’ve been to Oregon State before but I’m going again in April for their spring game, and I’m visiting Northwestern for the first time this summer.”
The in-state Sun Devils offered Taylor his freshman year and Oregon State offered him as a sophomore.
“The schools in my top three all offered me early,” Taylor said. “ASU has been interested in me for a long time, so I have a good relationship with the coaches, and those schools seem to be on the right track in the direction of their programs.”
Notre Dame has potential to make up ground in Taylor’s recruitment if the Irish receive a visit this summer.
“I’m also visiting Illinois when I visit Northwestern because that’s where my dad went, and since they’re close to Notre Dame, hopefully I can squeeze that visit in,” Taylor said. “They could definitely move up. They still offered me pretty early. If I’m able to take that visit, we’ll see where it goes.”
A broken left tibia sidelined Taylor during the semifinals of last season’s state playoffs, but before his injury Taylor caught 69 passes for 879 yards and 10 touchdowns. He rushed for six scores.
“I’m cleared for everything,” Taylor said. “I’ve been doing some light running and ladder work. I just haven’t gone full speed yet.”
The earliest Taylor believes a decision could come is August.
“I have no clear-cut time for when I want to make a decision,” Taylor said. “The earliest would be the end of summer around August. But I won’t have a presser with nine hats or anything like that. When I know where I want to go, I’ll make the decision.”
A variety of factors will impact Taylor’s decision-making process.
“High character coaches, good people, good business school, good academics overall, and a chance to play early,” Taylor said. “I know it’s really hard to start as a freshman, but even if it’s special teams, I want the chance to compete early.”