A month after committing to Clemson, Wake Forest (N.C.) Heritage guard Lucas Taylor sealed the deal with the Tigers on Wednesday when he signed his letter of intent to play for head coach Brad Brownell and his basketball program beginning in 2021-22.
Taylor, who gave his verbal pledge to Clemson on Oct. 9, hit it off with the coaching staff during the recruiting process and is excited to play in the ACC spotlight.
“It feels awesome,” Taylor told the Clemson Insider after signing. “I feel like it’s the great next chapter that I’ll be headed into and that it will be an awesome opportunity for me there as far as the stage that they’re on and then just the relationship I’ve built with all the coaches. It’s really strong, and I’m excited to get to know them even more as we build a really strong relationship. And then just getting to see them in person and things like that, it will be a lot of fun. So, just having that great ride with them and with the other guys, it will be awesome.”
Along with Taylor, the Tigers signed Columbia (S.C.) Cardinal Newman guard Josh Beadle and Loganville (Ga.) Grayson forward Ian Schieffelin on Wednesday.
Clemson’s 2021 recruiting class ranks 42nd nationally according to 247Sports.
“I think we have a lot of potential in this class,” Taylor said. “We’re all really versatile. Having Josh, he’s a big guard who’s a really good passer and can also score the ball as well, a lefty. And then Ian is a big guy. He can really shoot it, though, and stretches the floor but he also has some point-forward skills. So, we all play off each other really well. I feel like we’re going to be tough to handle once we all get used to playing with each other and things like that.”
Taylor, a 6-foot-6, 185-pound shooting guard, is the ninth-best player from the Tar Heel State and No. 209 overall prospect in the 2021 class per the 247Sports Composite rankings.
Last season, Taylor led Heritage in scoring, averaging 21.6 points per game. He scored 540 points as a junior, adding in averages of 5.2 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.6 steals per contest. Taylor’s performance as a junior earned him a spot on the N.C. Basketball Coaches Association All-District Team.
Taylor has accumulated plenty of accolades, including being named to the HighSchoolOT.com All-State Team and earning NBCA All-District, Conference Player of the Year and First-Team All-Conference honors.
A two-time conference champion and state runner-up his freshman season, Taylor says he will bring a “winning mentality” to Clemson to go with his scoring prowess and disruptive defense on the court.
“I want to come in and the goal is just to win every game night in, night out,” he said. “I’m also someone that can score at all three levels and really is going to use my scoring ability to get other guys involved when the focus is on me … And then also use my length on defense to get deflections and things like that.”
Taylor chose Clemson over the 30 other schools on his offer list including Miami, Cincinnati and Marquette.
A few different factors played an important role in Taylor’s college decision and set the Tigers apart from the other programs that pursued him during his recruitment.
“I would say the family environment there, just being real comfortable with all the coaches,” he said. “I felt like it was somewhere where I really had trust in them, and it felt like a family type environment there, which was big for me. And being able to really just see myself playing there and seeing myself having a good opportunity right away there as well were probably the main things.”
Taylor is slated to enroll at Clemson next summer ahead of the fall 2021 semester.
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