The Journal Gazette
Tuesday, December 28, 2021 2:10 pm

Former Indiana Mr. Football Taylor headed from IU to Purdue

DYLAN SINN | The Journal Gazette

Cornerback Reese Taylor, the 2017 Indiana Mr. Football, announced this week he will transfer from Indiana to Purdue for his final season of eligibility. He is the eighth player the Boilermakers have added from the transfer portal since the season ended.

Taylor was a four-year contributor and two-year starter at corner for the Hoosiers. He totaled 74 tackles, including eight for loss and two sacks, in three years as a defensive player and added 13 pass breakups, two interceptions and a forced fumble. His best season came in 2020, when he was fourth in the Big Ten with eight pass breakups and added four tackles for loss, a sack and an interception.

The former Ben Davis standout, who was a quarterback in high school, played offense as a freshman, catching 28 passes for 174 yards and running 15 times for 83 yards.

Taylor was also a factor in the return game, returning nine punts for a total of 73 yards as a junior on his way to Third-Team All-Big Ten honors at the position. Transfer DJ Matthews took over as Indiana's returner this season before tearing his ACL midway through the campaign.

The news of Taylor's transfer comes after Indiana received word fellow cornerbacks Tiawan Mullen and Jaylin Williams will be returning for another season in Bloomington. The Hoosiers struggled with injuries, including a lower-leg issue for Taylor, at the position in 2021, but will return those two starters, plus Noah Pierre, who moved from safety to corner and started five games at his new position this season. In addition, Indiana brought in four-star recruit Trevel Mullen, Tiawan's brother, at cornerback in the 2022 recruiting class.

The Indianapolis native is the third Indiana player to transfer to Purdue in the last eight months, joining defensive tackle Demarjhe Lewis and running back Sampson James. The Boilermakers have brought in players from Indiana, Kansas State, Auburn, Iowa and California through the portal since early December.

Three of Purdue's transfers have been cornerbacks: Taylor, Kansas State's Tee Denson and Adams State's Bryce Hampton. The trio will replenish the depth at a position that features two freshmen, Anthony Romphf and Brandon Calloway on the Music City Bowl depth chart and could lose three-year starter Dedrick Mackey to the NFL (though Mackey has one season of eligibility remaining). Taylor will likely compete with TJ Sheffield for return opportunities.

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