There was a surprise offer extended by the Texas Longhorns coaching staff this past weekend. According to Houston-based sources, 2013 point guard Isaiah Taylor from Houston (Tex.) The Village now possesses an offer. The news was broken by Jim Hicks of RCS Sports.
Hicks runs a website dedicated to Houston area high school basketball. He ranks Taylor as the 9th best prospect in the greater Houston area. Nationally, Taylor is not highly regarded by the major recruiting services. According to the 247 Composite rankings, he's just a 2-star recruit and ranks outside the top 300.
Taylor is from Northern California originally, and moved to Texas to gain more exposure to major colleges. The move appears to have paid off. Following strong summer league play, he picked up offers from teams like the Penn St. Nittany Lions and Nebraska Cornhuskers. The Texas offer is his most significant to date.
Taylor currently plays for The Village, a private school in Houston, alongside senior forward Dylan Jones. Jones was originally committed to Pepperdine, but reopened his recruitment and subsequently committed to Penn. The Village plays a freelance schedule and does not compete in UIL or TAPPS.
On the AAU circuit, Taylor runs with Texas PRO, the occasional home of five-star PG Emmanuel Mudiay, a top Texas target in the 2014 class. Texas PRO's Twitter account also confirmed that Taylor has an offer, and notes that Taylor will attend Texas' game against North Carolina this week.
On the surface, the offer is a bit of a head-scratcher. Many fans were calling for head coach Rick Barnes to recruit a point guard, particularly since Myck Kabongo is unlikely to be around for his junior season. However, those calls were more so for an elite player like Kentucky-bound Andrew Harrison, someone who could immediately step in and provide championship-level leadership.
With Kabongo sitting on the sidelines, freshman Javan Felix has been thrust into a starring role. Felix has had his ups and downs, but appears to be on track to becoming a solid multi-year starter for the Longhorns. Further, fellow freshman DeMarcus Holland has drawn early praise and looks like a capable backup behind Felix. As such, there does not appear to be any immediate playing time available for a developmental project like Taylor.
That said, Taylor's recruitment has picked up recently, and he may simply be better than advertised. Judge for yourself here and here.