When Smith-Cotton sports are playing, there is a good chance Andre Taylor is there on the sidelines.
Taylor is S-C’s new athletic trainer. He studied at Missouri Valley College in Marshall, graduating with a bachelor of science degree in athletic training and exercise science. He then went to Arkansas State University where he received a master’s degree in exercise science. Taylor worked with Arkansas State’s football team and its JROTC. Before coming to Sedalia, Taylor was head athletic trainer at Fort Scott Community College in Kansas, where he started a corrective exercise program to prevent injuries.
Taylor is an employee of Bothwell Regional Health Center and assigned to Smith-Cotton. He works with each sports program and goes to each event to care for the athletes.
“I try to make it to different sports practices, to make sure all the athletes know I am here for them and catch up on any athletes that might have an injury,” he said.
He connects with the players on a friendly but professional level.
“In my profession, if you have a good rapport with the athletes you can communicate with them better as well as get them to do things that need to be done to get them healthier easier,” he said.
S-C Football Head Coach Ryan Boyer said Taylor is reliable and does well with the athletes.
“He’s very good at explaining things and the players respect his opinion,” Boyer said. “He’s very interactive with the athletes.”
Athletic Director Rob Davis said, “Taylor has a very strong background and will benefit S-C because of that.”
Taylor wants to make sure each program knows he’s there to help them reach their goals. He is appreciative of the job opportunity.
“Being able to do what I am doing, where I am at in life … this is a blessing.” he said. “I hope to continue to better myself and those around me.”
Haily Zaremba is a Smith-Cotton High School student.