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The Story Behind Alontae Taylor’s ‘Shimmying’ Touchdown Celebration

Alontae Taylor
Tennessee DB Alontae Taylor broke out “The Shimmy” after scoring on an interception return against Kentucky.

Tennessee defensive back Alontae Taylor had one of the most explosive and game-changing plays against Kentucky on Saturday night. The Vols and the Wildcats were trading punches back-and-forth all night as Tennessee had trouble pulling away from a one-score game.

However, that all changed in the third quarter. With just over six minutes remaining in the quarter, Kentucky quarterback Will Levis fired a pass to an out-route on his right. But Taylor read the play and set a trap before Levis even threw the ball. Taylor jumped the route, intercepted the ball, and took it 56-yards to the house to extend Tennessee’s lead to 38-28.

While still in the endzone, Taylor brought out a touchdown celebration dance that sent the internet ablaze.

Endzone dances have become more and more creative through the years, with Taylor’s dance being no exception. However, Taylor’s dance, known as “Shimmying”, has historic context, as well. Over the weekend and into the week, Taylor gave some of the backstories behind his dance in the endzone.

First, on Sunday night, Taylor wrote about it on social media.

“My touchdown celebration is known as ‘Shimmying’,” Taylor said on Twitter. “It is apart of my great Fraternity known as Kappa Alpha Psi. Fraternity Inc. Out of respect to my fraternity and GOOD brothers please leave it to us to Shimmy. I appreciate the love and support of the celebration. Thank You.”

The University of Tennessee’s Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity was founded in 1986, however, the fraternity’s National founding dates all the way back to 1911.

Then, while speaking with the media in Knoxville on Monday, Taylor gave more of the backstory behind why he did the dance and where it comes from.

“Me and my fraternity brothers, my Lion brothers, we talk all the time and I told them that when I got my first-ever pick-six that I was going to Shimmy,” Taylor said on Monday. “It’s a little thing we do in our strolling, we dance a little bit. It’s part of our fraternity and whenever I scored, I pointed at some of the Tennessee fans that were standing there, and they clicked right into my brain that I promised my fraternity brothers I would do that. So I made sure to do it.”

Taylor continued on with a huge smile as he critiqued his own dance.

“Little too freaky with my legs,” Taylor said while laughing. “Maybe I should’ve used my shoulders a little bit more. But everybody liked it so it was smooth.”

Taylor’s dance would have never been possible without the heads-up play that preceded it. On Monday, Taylor gave some insight into what was going through his mind before and during the play.

“It was dope,” Taylor said. “I just felt like it was the right timing. Coach (Tim) Banks made a great play call. We knew who their personnel were and who their go-to guy was. I knew what my responsibility was and trusted that my safety would be over top. The whole time my mindset was that I am breaking on this and knew he was going to run an out route. He just threw the ball to me. It was dope and I am glad I got to celebrate with the team and do my little shimmy.”

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One Response

  1. Hello Rick – I’m sure Alontae stated his Line Brothers and not Lion Brothers. Please update.
    Thank You for the article and story.

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