Two Kilgore College football players who were unsigned out of high school proved recently that hard work pays off by signing Division 1 collegiate scholarships with FBS schools.
Walker, an offensive lineman from Crestview, Fla., and Taylor, a defensive end from Lufkin, were both unsigned out of high school, but enrolled at KC and joined the KC Redshirt Football Program program with a chance to prove themselves worthy of earning a spot on the team. And they did.
"What's incredible about these two young men is that they never gave up," said head coach Willie Gooden. "They understood that they were going to have to put the work in and it wasn't going to be easy. To see them rise from being redshirts to playing at a level that secured big-time college scholarships, to graduating with their associate degrees, it's an incredible success story."
Both Walker and Taylor worked tirelessly, eventually earning a spot on the team, then the starting lineups. Their hard work on and off the field paid dividents with both players graduating from KC in December, and both players signing Division 1 scholarships - Walker to the University of Connecticut and Taylor to The University of Texas at El Paso.
Sidney Walker attended KC’s summer tryout combine and was a walk-on freshman in the fall of 2017. Walker was a member of the redshirt football program until the middle of the fall semester. The Rangers took some hits on their depth chart, and Walker was brought up from the redshirt program to compete for a starting job. He quickly took over the starting position, and didn’t give it up for his two years as a Ranger. Starting 21 games during his time at KC, Walker was voted First Team All-Conference and Second Team All-American his sophomore year. He graduated from KC in December of 2019 with an Associate of Arts (3.0 GPA) and signed an athletic scholarship to an FBS school (University of Connecticut).
Jadrian Taylor attended KC’s 2017 summer combine and was invited to become a member of the redshirt football program. Taylor ended up seeing the field plenty during his freshman redshirt campaign and worked his way up to the starting lineup in his sophomore year. During his sophomore season, Taylor finished the season tied for second in sacks on the team, and was selected All-Conference. He graduated from KC in December of 2019 with an Associate of Arts (3.0 GPA) and signed an athletic scholarship to an FBS school (The University of Texas at El Paso).