Installing a new system can be difficult for high school players to learn quickly. But not for Taylor Richardson.
First-year Alcovy head coach Spencer Fortson spoke highly on Richardson’s ability to “grasp the concept.”
“He’s a guy that understands what we’re doing,” Fortson said. “He’s able to move the guys in the different positions. So, right now, if we had to bank on somebody, it would be him. He’ll be a guy who we’ll depend on for leadership in the secondary and for our entire defense.”
Richardson admitted he hasn’t done anything special this offseason to learn all the new verbiage, but he hopes that he’s done enough to properly relay knowledge to his teammates.
“I have just been trying to work hard, hone in on my skills and focus on what the coaches tell me to do,” Richardson said. “Then I try my best to pass any information I pick up along and help my teammates be the best they can be.”
Richardson is a 5-foot-9, 145-pound strong safety for the Tigers who is entering his junior season. This summer, Richardson has prioritized coming down hill, filling up gaps on defense and helping the entire unit get stops.
On top of learning a new system, Richardson has also been working on his individual skillset. An offseason filled with summer workouts and padded camps makes him feel as if he’s developed a lot this offseason.
“Every time during padded camps, whenever I see a gap, I try and fill it,” Richardson said. “Then, I try and make the play as best I can. I’ve enjoyed the experience. I feel like my teammates and I have gotten close, and we’ve come a long way since the spring.”
Richardson complimented his new head coach as a proponent of his growth.
“His system is very efficient,” Richardson said. “It actually makes us think and work. We never go through the motions, but we’re always going full speed. I really appreciate the opportunity to learn from coach Fortson for the next two years. He’s detail oriented and has brought in a good environment.”
Now, heading into his junior season, Richardson has one thing in mind: Winning. Richardson said that he just wants to do whatever he can to help the Tigers go as far as they can in 2022.
“I want to do my part to help my teammates out throughout the season,” Richardson said. “Then, I want us to work together toward winning another region championship this year and, hopefully, going deeper into the playoffs at the end of the year.”