Londedric Taylor said that his decision to attend University of Mary Hardin Baylor in Belton, Texas was two-fold — a win-win proposition.
Athletically, the Crusaders are a perennial top five football team in the NCAA Division III ranks, and according to Taylor, who took part in formal signing ceremonies at the Jacksonville High School Library on Monday afternoon, said that he was equally draw to the school's academic offerings.
“When I went down there to visit the campus I was impressed by their engineering department and that's what I will be majoring in, as well as all the new things that they are doing with their football stadium,” Taylor, a 5-foot-10, 175-pound defensive back, said.
The Crusaders, who ended the 2012 season with a 13-1 record and a No.3-national ranking in the AFCA poll, will be playing in a brand new state-of-the-art on-campus stadium beginning this fall.
The stadium, along with a new student union facility, will be a $50 million investment, according to information released by the university.
Over the past four seasons UMHB, who calls the American Southwest Conference home, has amassed a 48-4 record and has lost only one regular-season game during that span.
The Crusaders' lone blemish last year came at the hands of No.1-ranked Mount Union (Ohio), in a national semi-final game where UMHB fell, 48-35.
“Mary Hardin Baylor has been a D-III power for a long time and everyone wants to play for a winner,” Taylor said. “In talking to the coach down there, he indicated to me that there is a good possibility that I will get to play in my first year, so that's my goal.”
Taylor, was a All-District 16-4A second teamer this past season for head coach Chris Taber's Fight'n Indians at the safety position.
He said early indications are that he will be moved to the outside and play defensive back at UMHB.
Taylor was accompanied by his mother, Sandra Landon and brother, Chris Landon on Monday as a number of Indian coaches, faculty members and administrators looked on, providing plenty of congratulatory encouragements.
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Jacksonville High School will be wrapping up spring football practice by staging a Blue vs. White scrimmage at 6 p.m. this evening at Tomato Bowl.
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