After a standout debut game in the blue and white - leading the team in scoring with 22 points, six assists and two steals - senior captain Quincy Taylor was deemed ineligible for three games due to a NCAA violation; after playing in three non-NCAA sanctioned games during the 2013-14 academic year.
“I want to play, but it happens. If I have to sit out, I have to sit out. I’m not going to walk around with my head down or pout, I can’t change it so [I] just have to deal with it,” said Taylor.
A transfer from the University of Alabama-Birmingham (UAB), Taylor was red shirted and had to sit out a season due to NCAA transfer rules.
At UAB, Taylor played his first two seasons of Division I basketball. During this time, he collected a total of 33 starts between his freshman and sophomore years.
His freshman year he was the backup point guard and played in all 31 games, with five starts, but worked his way to the starting position during his sophomore season.
His first year with UAB ended with his “greatest success.”
“We won the conference championship and it was amazing, I carry that ring around everywhere I go,” said Taylor. “That’s our goal here [Longwood], to win the conference championship.”
Taylor held his starting position for 28 games his sophomore year before a season-ending knee injury.
Lucky for Taylor the injury wasn’t career-ending.
“When I got hurt I thought it was going to be devastating, but actually that summer when I was rehabbing I got stronger and faster,” said Taylor. “It really hasn’t changed my game much...I feel the same.”
Before his knee injury and before going to UAB, the path of the 23 year old from Wichita, Kansas to Division I basketball was not the typical one. After not playing during his senior year of high school, Taylor graduated uncommitted and attended various camps to try to grab the attention of coaches.
Although the camps got him “a couple looks,” Taylor “wasn’t interested.”
One camp, however, brought the interest of a prep school in Virginia—Fishburne Military School. Due to that connection, other coaches started to take notice.
“I ended up going there and that season got me all types of scholarship [offers], that’s why I went to UAB,” said Taylor. “It was worth it, I’d do it all over again the same way.”
Taylor had worked from the age of three to reach where he is now, pushed by his father, Ghy Taylor, a fellow basketball player.
“My dad played basketball when I was growing up and when I was real little, barely could walk, he’d take me to the gym and I’d just throw shot after shot. So it’s basically a family thing,” said Taylor.
Family played a huge part in Taylor beginning to play basketball, as it did in him playing at Longwood. Head coach Jayson Gee began the recruitment of Taylor through his mother, who was skeptical of the school.
“He called my mom first and my mom didn’t want to talk to Longwood, but she heard Coach Gee talk for a while. Then my mom called me and told me about Coach Gee and to give him a chance and so she gave him my number and he called me right away,” said Taylor. “I loved UAB, it was more of a coaching change and I didn’t really fit with the new coach,” said Taylor. “It wasn’t my type of environment to be around.”
Taylor’s basketball experience at Longwood has been rocky after being red shirted a season ago and currently serving a three-game (Averett University, James Madison University and UNC Greensboro) NCAA sanctioned suspension.
According to Taylor, this shouldn’t affect the season much. In fact, he believes the team will be better off for it, improving on the court while he’s taking his time off.
“I think we’ll just have to get through however many games I have to sit out and then just build off of what we’ve learned while I’ve been gone. Like Leron [Fisher] and Kanayo [Obi-Rapu] playing point guard right now, it’s getting the team better, putting people in positions they’re not used to; so I think it’s a positive,” said Taylor.
When the time comes that Taylor’s allowed on the court again, he believes he’ll be ready.
“I’m practicing harder, I just can’t wait to get back to playing basketball.”