A month ago, Roc Taylor visited Tennessee for a Junior Day event. On Friday, he decided to go ahead and commit to the Vols.
Taylor, a three-star athlete who plays for Oxford High School in Oxford, Alabama, announced on his Twitter account on Friday that he had committed to Tennessee in the 2021 class. Taylor chose the Vols over offers from Florida, South Carolina, Arkansas, Georgia Tech, and others.
— Roc (@Roc2shot) April 10, 2020
The 6-foot-4, 210-pound athlete is the No. 447 overall prospect in the 2021 class per the 247Sports Composite rankings. Though he’s listed as a tight end on 247Sports, Taylor looks to play wide receiver for the Vols. He’s currently the No. 18 prospect in Alabama and the third-ranked athlete in the state.
Tennessee first offered Taylor back on November 30, 2019, giving him his third SEC offer of his recruitment. Since then, he’s added offers from Florida, Kansas State, Tulane, Kansas, Georgia Tech, and others after having a breakout junior campaign.
Taylor’s head coach at Oxford, Keith Etheredge, believes the dynamic athlete has some of the best hands he’s ever seen as a coach.
“Roc has probably got the best hands I’ve ever seen,” Etheredge told Ben Thomas of AL.com in a recent interview. “If the ball is near him, he’s going to catch it. He just tracks it and runs it down. He can do a little of everything. He’s hard to tackle because he’s so big and strong, but he also has the skill set of a wide receiver.
“I’ll just say that if the ball is in the air and he’s over there, I feel real, real good about the outcome.”
Etheredge’s assessment of Taylor is pretty spot-on when looking at the junior’s film from this past season. Taylor moves well for his size and is a faster, big-bodied receiver. He has soft hands and can snag some seemingly impossible catches. Taylor has a great catch radius with his big frame and long arms, and he’s extremely hard to tackle thanks to that big body. He’s a decent route runner who has a strong foundation to build upon.
In his junior season, Taylor caught 71 passes for 1,306 yards and 17 touchdowns. He was named to the Alabama Sports Writers Association All-State team and helped lead the Yellow Jackets to the Class 6A state title game.
With Taylor’s commitment, the Vols now have 10 commits in the 2021 class and have three commits from projected wide receivers. Taylor joins fellow Alabama prospect and four-star wideout Jordan Mosley and Tennessee three-star wide receiver Walker Merrill as the Vols’ wide receiver commits.