Kelvin Taylor has yet to play a down of college football.
Still, many expect the Florida Gators’ running back signee to make an immediate impact during the 2013 season.
The website AthlonSports.com, which also publishes an annual season preview magazine, lists Taylor as one of the “10 College Football True Freshman Likely to Make an Impact in 2013.”
It’s a national list, so Taylor earning recognition as one of the top-10 true freshmen in the country is certainly noteworthy.
The 5-foot-11, 216-pounder enrolled in classes at UF last month, meaning he’s already on campus working out and will be with the team for spring practices. That will give him an even better opportunity of contributing early than he would have had if he had enrolled this upcoming summer.
Although a starter has not officially been named, sophomore Matt Jones is in line to start the season opener against Toledo on Aug. 31. Taylor is vying for playing time along with returnee Mack Brown and fellow signee Adam Lane, who’ll arrive on campus this summer.
Here’s what Athlon wrote about Taylor’s chances:
“Florida must find a replacement for Mike Gillislee … Even if Jones starts the opener, look for Taylor to see plenty of action next season.”
Taylor, of course, is the son of former Florida and NFL running back Fred Taylor. Athlon ranks Kelvin Taylor as the No. 3 running back in the country in the Class of 2013.
After breaking Emmitt Smith’s state of Florida career rushing record as a junior, he also received scholarship offers from Alabama, Auburn, Florida State, LSU, Miami and South Carolina, among others, before becoming one of the first verbal commitments of UF’s 2013 class on Feb. 18, 2012.
Florida fans will get their first look at Taylor in his No. 21 Gators jersey — the same number his father wore — during the Orange & Blue Debut spring scrimmage at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on April 6.
Taylor is reportedly working on his speed to lower his 4.63-second, 40-yard dash time. He also recorded a 31-inch vertical leap in high school.
Athlon’s list features three true freshmen from the SEC among the top 10. The others are Ole Miss defensive end Robert Nkemdiche and Texas A&M receiver Ricky Seals-Jones.
It also mentions “15 More Recruits To Watch” and that list included Florida cornerback signee Vernon Hargreaves III.