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Thursday, July 19, 2018
Taylor George finds new home at Brooklyn College Taylor George finds new home at Brooklyn College

Taylor George finds new home at Brooklyn College

Thursday, January 4, 2018 by Steve andres Special to the Press in Sports

Taylor George’s year at Temple University provided her with a clear cut understanding of how she wanted the rest of her college years to unfold.

As she attended classes at the school that’s located on Broad Street in Philadelphia, the former Whitehall multisport athlete realized that something was missing, and that was reaffirmed when she returned home during Christmas break last year.

“I asked myself, ‘is this really what I want,’” said George. “I reached out to my sister and Kayla Bet, and asked their opinions, and then made my decision.”

What George learned is that she missed the camaraderie that arises from playing team sports. And basketball was something that’s she played since she was in youth sports.

“I really missed having a team, doing team things,” said George. “Waking up and not going to practice wasn’t right. I missed the routine of being an athlete.”

That realization led her to find another school, a search made a bit more complicated because she didn’t want to abandon her aspirations of becoming a speech pathologist. That search eventually led her to Brooklyn College, but even before her arrival on campus, she knew that she didn’t have any game film that would accompany her desire to play collegiate basketball.

That didn’t bother Bulldogs head coach Alex Lang. George said that he was interested in her despite never watching her play live. She said that once she arrived, she felt right at home since Lang likes to play a style she enjoys.

“He likes to play fast and upbeat,” said George.

George also said that Lang emphasizes energy and enthusiasm. He wants them motivated, cheering for one another, and taking things seriously. If that doesn’t happen, George said they’ll be on the line running.

George said that they do a lot of drilling at practice, something different from her days playing scholastically at Whitehall.

“We do a lot of different drills in a short amount of time,” said George. “Practice is filled with a lot of those drills.”

George said that the two have formed a good relationship, and that began with welcoming her with open arms. She said that she could see how passionate he was about coaching and how that energy carries over to everything he does.

“He was a big part of why I came to Brooklyn,” said George.

While George played point guard most of basketball career at Whitehall, she switched to the shooting guard her senior year. That’s proven to be a valuable tool as she’s learned to play off the ball more for the Bulldogs. George is averaging 12.7 points per game this season. She’s also logging roughly 27 minutes per game, a pretty hefty load for a first-year player.

George has had a number of good offensive games, most notably their game against New York University where she went 5-5 from the field, three of those field goals from beyond the arc. She finished with 18 points in that win. She’s also scored 23 points versus Hunter College, and 22 in a win against Farmingdale State College.

The Bulldogs, who play in the City University of New York Athletic Conference (CUNY), are currently 8-2. They sit in fourth place in the conference with a schedule that runs through late February.

George said that Lang will vary his defensive pressure, usually employing it to get them going. He’s also utilized George to pressure the ball, allowing her to pick up her man to see if she can force a turnover. She’s averaging nearly two steals per game so far this season.

“He knows my ability on defense,” said George. “He wants me up all the time pressuring the ballhandler, slow the team down and get turnovers. He likes me up and pressing.”

George said that the two have formed a good relationship, and that began with welcome her with open arms. She said that she could see how passionate he was about coaching and how that energy carries over to everything he does.

“He was a big part of why I came to Brooklyn,” said George.

George also knows if a player doesn’t play hard or exhibit that enthusiasm and commitment, there’s always another player to take their place. That’s why she has to focus every possession. Playing time is earned and it’s that way for everyone.

George enjoys what Brooklyn offers, from its cosmopolitan setting where she can soak in the flavor of a big city, to the diversity of the campus where students from all corners of the globe come to study. George said that there’s currently a girl from Norway on the team, underscoring the school’s international draw.

She’s also learned that a lot of her classmates don’t have licenses since public transportation gets them where they need to be. It’s just another difference from the rural background she experienced attending Whitehall.

“I really enjoy the city a lot,” said George.

As George quickly acclimates to the rigors of playing college hoops, as well as handling a full college course load, it looks like she’s found a home, both on and off the court.