St. Benedict’s Prep power forward Denzell Taylor is headed to Old Dominion.
The 6-foot-7, 215-foot power forward picked ODU on Tuesday over Long Island University. St. Bonaventure, Siena and St. Joe’s were previously involved.
“I definitely liked the team [and] the team chemistry,” Taylor told SNY.tv by phone. “They made me feel like a family when I was down there last weekend [on a visit].”
“He chose Old Dominion because he felt comfortable,” CIA Bounce coach Tony McIntyre told SNY.tv. “There’s a need for him and he brings a proven, tough solid forward with the ability to rebound and defensively help the squad.
“He is the glue that makes teams win and is a proven winner.”
He played on the Team Canada and CIA Bounce teams this summer that featured Syracuse-bound point guard Tyler Ennis, Florida State-bound shooting guard Xavier Rathan-Mayes and uncommitted small forward Andrew Wiggins. Those teams reached the finals of the Nike Global Challenge and the Peach Jam.
“I definitely think I’ll be a big defensive player for them,” Taylor said of ODU. “I will get rebounds and do all the little things and just be a big force for them down low.”
“He is a warrior,” St. Ben’s coach Mark Taylor previously told SNY.tv. “He is the guy who you win with. Even in our pickup games here, whichever team Denzell plays with, they find a way to win.
“He does a lot of things that go unnoticed that help you win. He has a constant motor, gets loose balls, blocks shots, sets screens, makes putbacks.
“He doesn’t require the basketball, which is a rare breed. He doesn’t pout, he just keeps going whether he touches the ball or not. In today’s game, that is a rare breed.”
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Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.