|Raymon Taylor (#1) terrifies an Inkster wide receiver into dropping a pass|
Freshman defensive back Raymon Taylor is fast. Actually, after clocking a 10.6 in the 100 meter on a bad foot, it's probably more accurate to say that this former track star is really fast.
Raymon brings his track speed to Ann Arbor from Highland Park, MI, which is a blue collar town completely surrounded by the city of Detroit. Although both Highland Park and Detroit have experienced their fair share of recent struggles and negative press, Raymon is proud of his city.
"It's really a small little city, right in inner Detroit. I love it. I was there [at Highland Park High School] for four years, playing football and running track. I knew everyone, so it was really easy for me to fit in. But other people from Detroit come to my town to come play for Highland Park; they really like it, too. It really is a fun city. It's all about hard work, playing sports and doing school."Part of Raymon's exceptional experience at Highland Park can be attributed to significant involvement by his dad. Mr. Taylor coaches softball and JV football at Highland Park High, which made it easy for him to "keep an eye" on Raymon by "being out there, saying what to do to get better [at football]." Interestingly, one strategy to get better at football included getting better at track.
"Oh yeah, track helped me a lot with football...it made me faster. I feel that I was born fast, though. It just took me to the next level, got me real, real fast. It really is about the workouts. You gotta put in your work to get fast."Raymon is expecting to continue with his second sport by running track for the Wolverines during his sophmore year. But for right now, Taylor is focused on making an impact on the football field. His versatility and athleticism make playing time as a freshman a strong possibility and open doors for offensive contributions down the road.
"Right now, [I'll be playing] defensive back and taking kickoff returns and punt returns. But they said if I work hard and do the right things, I can help on offense my second year...I'm trying to be like Charles Woodson...I'm going to come in and play hard, workout hard, so I should touch the field [in 2011] -- I will touch the field. I know it. I'm good enough to play with anybody. I'm going to come in, take care of business, work out hard, and I'll be on the field this year."On game days, Raymon will be busy preparing to see the field by doing track drills while listening to his "#1 song" through headphones. Coming from a strong family of Michigan fans, also expect Mr. Taylor to continue keeping an eye on his son's football season. But this year, playing in front of a packed Big House crowd, Mr. Taylor won't be the only person keeping an eye on Raymon.