PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- Rutgers coach Mike Rice continues to reel in top level recruits from the New York area.
Mike Taylor, a 6-foot-4, 195-pound shooting guard from Brooklyn Boys & Girls, verbally committed to Rutgers during Saturday's North Carolina-Rutgers football game. Taylor is one of more than a dozen recruits on campus for the game.
"Yes, I told Coach Rice," Taylor said by phone. "He told me I was his first choice at the shooting guard position."
He chose Rutgers over West Virginia, Florida and South Carolina.
Taylor scored 11 of his game-high 25 points in the fourth quarter last March when Boys & Girls beat Cardozo, 55-50, at Madison Square Garden to win its first PSAL title in 31 years.
"First of all, [Rutgers] is going to get a kid who's a winner," said Boys & Girls assistant Elmer Anderson. "He's been winning since he's been on JV. He helped lead the school to its first city championship in 31 years. He's a hardworking young man who wants to work hard at getting better and contribute to winning. He's just a winner."
Taylor joins a star-studded recruiting class that includes Kadeem Jack, Derrick Randall, Myles Mack, Jerome Seagears and Malick Kone. Jack, Randall and Mack are all here for the football game.
"Me, Derrick, Myles and Kadeem, that's going to be a good experience for us," Taylor said. "My freshman year, you never know, we could probably make some noise. We're all from New York, we all know how each other plays. It's gonna be a good experience for the Big East."
Taylor also traveled with Jack and Randall to Turkey with a New York City All-Star team that won the World Basketball Festival title in August.
"That's a ridiculous class," Anderson said.
"[The Turkey trip] is going to help. Everyone wants familiarity where you can get comfortable and everyone has the same goals. Kadeem comes from a winning program at Rice. Derrick came from a winning program at Paterson Catholic. Myles came from a winning program at Paterson Catholic. Mike is from a winning program. He's surrounded himself. He must've really liked everything."
A strong 3-point shooter, Taylor can play the two guard and complement Mack and Seagears in the backcourt.
"[Coach Rice] told me as soon as I get here he wants me to be a scorer," Taylor said. "He wants me to have the same mentality, be more mature and have to adjust to the college level.
"Instead of shooting most of the shots, he wants me to come in here and shoot as much as he needs me to and put the ball in the basket."
Added Anderson: "He's one of the best shooters in the country. And more importantly, he's willing to take the tough shot in close games when others may not want to.
"They defer to him because they have that much confidence in him. He competes in practices and he's relentless in his pursuit of winning."