The most known unknown
Newton High sophomore running back receiving college attention
Kurt Taylor Jr. Get to know the name and the young sophomore Newton running back because by the time he’s a senior, Taylor Jr. will be one of the best running backs in the nation.
Taylor stands strong at 5-foot-nine, weighing in at a rock-solid 200 pounds. He’s built like a miniature Hercules, and apparently that’s the way colleges see him. Taylor Jr. is receiving multiple offers from power-five schools, and he’s not even featured heavily in Newton’s offense yet.
Taylor has offers from well known schools like Vanderbilt, Kentucky and UNLV. He’s been on multiple unofficial visits to schools like Georgia and Auburn, plus plenty of camps/combines to let colleges see the type of player Taylor is.
“What they love about me – they like my style of running. They like me as a person. I’m a humble person. I’m a hard worker and I’m a good guy.” Taylor said.
Hard work and humble are words you’d probably use to describe Taylor if you’ve ever met him. He’s quiet and unassuming despite his amazing physique. But Taylor wasn’t always this way, well at least he wasn’t always this muscular.
It started when Taylor, who had always wanted to play football, broke his tibia in half while he was in the fifth grade. His father Taylor Sr. says he once slept with a football in his hand and a helmet on his head he loved football so much, but Taylor Jr’s injury didn’t change that.
“He knew what he had to do,” Taylor Sr. said. “This guy would run every day. He’d say, ‘Dad can I play this year?’ And I’d say, ‘No.’ He said, ‘I can play.’ I’d say, “No, you can’t. You gotta show me what you can do before you get on that football field.”
So Taylor Jr. showed him. He worked hard to get back to form. Taylor would run every day, even in the summer in 100-degree weather. He worked on his footwork, ran, lifted weights and did pushups and pullups to build his body for two or three hours each day. Taylor Sr. told his son that if he could get past this injury, there would be no adversity he couldn’t go through.
“I said, ‘Kurt, this injury right here is going to propel you to the next level because most people would quit right here, but you want to still play in spite of [your injury],” Taylor Sr. recalls.
After two years, Taylor Sr. finally let his son play football in the eighth grade. Taylor Jr. suited up for Clements Middle School and took the team by storm. In his first year playing, he led the team in rushing yards and touchdowns. Not bad for a guy who hadn’t stepped on a football field in over two years.
Taylor used his injury to his advantage. He’s morphed into this hulkish character that can power clean over 300 pounds, bench 375 pounds and hit over 500 pounds on the leg press. All while maintaining his 3.7 GPA in school.
“Hard work is undefeated,” Taylor Sr. said. “His work ethic, I have never in my life – and I work hard, I’m one of the hardest working people you could ever meet — but his work ethic is unmatched. This guy gets up in the morning does about 400 pushups, maybe 500. He’s been doing this for a long time. Ain’t like he just started this. This is something he constantly does all the time.”
The Taylors are definitely a sports family and Taylor Jr. is surrounded by successful athletes in his family. However, they’re more of a basketball family, but Taylor is the first to play football.
Taylor Sr. played basketball at the University of Hawaii and eventually in the USBL. His uncle Oliver Taylor was an All-City selection while at Far Rockaway High School in Queens, New York before having a successful career at Seton Hall and eventually playing professionally in France. Taylor Jr. is also Rockdale star defensive back/receiver, T.J. Warren’s cousin, who signed to play at the University of Missouri in February.
This guy gets up in the morning does about 400 pushups [maybe 500]. He’s been doing this for a long time. Ain’t like he just started this. This is something he constantly does all the time”
Kurt Taylor is one of the best kept secrets in Newton County. The almost 200-pound running back is just a sophomore at Newton High School and he’s already drawn multiple offers from power-five schools such as Rutgers, Vanderbilt and UNLV.