Jeff Taylor, a standout basketball prospect from Hobbs [N.M.] High, committed to Vanderbilt on Sunday and plans to sign a letter-of-intent later this week, he told The City Paper on Monday.
Taylor, a 6-foot-7 forward ranked among the nation's top 150 prospects by ESPN, picked the Commodores over Texas. He averaged more than 30 points per game while leading his school to the 5A state championship this spring.
"I liked the way Texas did things, too, but in the end Vanderbilt just felt like the right place to go," Taylor said. "I went where my heart was telling me to go."
Taylor will join forwards Lance Goulbourne of Princeton, N.J., and Steve Tchiengang of Montverde, Fla., in Vanderbilt's incoming recruiting class this fall. VU is also still recruiting guard Brad Tinsley of Oregon City, Ore., who visited campus two weekends ago.
Taylor figures to play immediately next season for Vanderbilt at a wing position.
"I'm somebody who can score a bunch of points," he said. "I try to make my teammates better and like to pass the ball. If I go there, play hard and do what I can do, there will be a big opportunity for playing time."
Check Tuesday's print and online edition of The City Paper for more on Taylor and Vanderbilt's 2008 recruiting class.