Jacksonville Jaguars Offensive Lineman Jawaan Taylor Inducted into Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame
By Space Coast Daily // April 15, 2022
Taylor is a former Cocoa High School and University of Florida standout
ABOVE VIDEO: Jawaan Taylor, offensive lineman for the Jacksonville Jaguars and former standout at Cocoa High School and the University of Florida will be inducted into the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame as part of its 2020 class.
SPACE COAST DAILY TV: Jawaan Taylor, offensive lineman for the Jacksonville Jaguars and former standout at Cocoa High School and the University of Florida will be inducted into the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame as part of its 2020 class.
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Jawaan Taylor, offensive lineman for the Jacksonville Jaguars and former standout at Cocoa High School and the University of Florida will be inducted into the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame as part of its 2020 class.
Taylor, who will be inducted alongside a pair of former Cocoa High teammates in New Orleans Saints safety Chauncey Gardner-Johnson and Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Jamel Dean, played every snap this year for Jacksonville, according to NFL.com.
That Taylor is living his NFL dream simultaneously with two peers he grew up playing with is something he seems to cherish.
“It’s a blessing. Us three all playing together in Little League,” Taylor said.
“We all started out in flag football together. Me and Chauncey have been playing football together every year since we were four years old, so we were on the same team all through little league, all through high school, all through college. That was a great experience to see all our dreams fulfilled because you know from day 1 we already knew our dreams and aspirations were to play in the NFL.”
Taylor credits some of his success to former head coach at Cocoa High School, John Wilkinson, who was inducted in the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame in 2013.
“He was a father figure,” Taylor said.
It was Wilkinson, Taylor says, along with his family that helped him during a career-altering summer following his junior season in which he lost an astonishing 52 pounds, making him more attractive to prospective schools.
“I started getting really good offers then,” said Taylor, who added that the “light switch really switched on” for him that summer.
Prior to signing to play college football at the University of Florida, Taylor had committed to the University of Miami, but Taylor says he ended up going to Florida after Miami fired former head coach Al Golden and his staff.
“When I was getting ready to commit somewhere, I wanted to make sure it was a place that felt like home as well,” Taylor said.
Despite overcoming some adversity in the form of having different coaches throughout his time at the school and a torn meniscus that he says he suffered prior to the start of his sophomore season, Taylor excelled at the school.
In particular, Taylor says he knew he was ready for the next level at the end of his junior season.
“Right towards the end of the last quarter of the season, that’s what I really wanted to do,” said Taylor, regarding his decision to forego his senior season and declare for the NFL Draft.
And sure enough, Taylor got the opportunity to see his dream become a reality on April 26, 2019, when he was selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars with the 35th overall pick in the draft.
“It was the best experience of a lifetime,” said Taylor.
In his rookie season, Taylor started the first game and had such a successful season in 2019 that he was named to the Pro Football Writers of America All-Rookie Team.
“I played 1,000 snaps, started every game, I owe a lot of that credit to just how I prepared,” Taylor said.
In recognition of his incredible success at the high school, college and professional levels, Space Coast Daily is proud to announce Taylor as an inductee into the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame.
FOR INFORMATION ABOUT 2022 SPACE COAST SPORTS HALL OF FAME INDUCTION, call 321-323-4460 or 321-615-8111 or e-mail Contact@SpaceCoastDaily.com.
CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS
CLICK HERE TO SEE MEMBERS OF THE SPACE COAST SPORTS HALL OF FAME
The Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame selection committee announced the induction of both the 2020 and 2021 classes will take place on Friday, May 13 at the Cocoa Beach Country Club. The induction of both classes were postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The festivities include a Meet and Greet with the area’s sports royalty beginning at 6 p.m., and the dinner and induction proceeding will start at 6:45 p.m. and includes compelling video tributes of each of the inductees.
The Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame induction event will also include the Brevard County High School Breakfast of Champions recognition awards, which will be held Friday, May 13 from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m., also at the Cocoa Beach Country Club, to kick off morning and evening events honoring the area’s outstanding athletes, coaches, administrators and sports celebrities.
The Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame induction dinner will be held on the evening of May 13, with a Meet and Greet at 6 p.m. and dinner and program at 7 p.m. The Meet and Greet will include an opportunity to talk with the area’s sports royalty, followed by dinner and the induction proceeding, which includes compelling video tributes of each of the inductees.
During the Breakfast of Champions, more than 40 awards will be presented to the best of the best student-athletes.
Businesses and individuals looking to support these outstanding youth and prep athletes can sponsor an award for $500 and includes recognition during the awards event and in the program.
As a sponsor, an invitation will be extended to you and up to four guests to join the festivities for the breakfast. You’ll be seated with the recipient of your award and their family, which is a great chance to meet these talented athletes and get to know them on a personal level. For information about the Brevard County Breakfast of Champions call 321-615-8111 or e-mail Contact@SpaceCoastDaily.com.
Both the Breakfast of Champions and the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame events will be streamed live on Space Coast Daily TV.
The 2020–2021 Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame induction event, and the Brevard County High School Breakfast of Champions recognition awards, are sponsored by Health First, Erdman Automotive, All Points, Clear Choice Health Care, Savings Safari, Friday Night Locker Room and Rock Paper Simple.
CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS to the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame induction ceremony. For information e-mail Contact@SpaceCoastDaily.com or call 321-615-8111.
INDUCTEES SELECTED IN FOUR CATEGORIES
Dozens of nominees were considered for the 2020 and 2021 classes in several categories including professional sports, college sports, high school sports and amateur sports.
Nominees are chosen in four categories including professional sports, college sports, high school sports and amateur sports. Special honorary recognition is also bestowed upon individuals and groups that have made significant contributions to sports on the Space Coast.
SPACE COAST SPORTS HALL OF FAME CLASS OF 2021:
■ PROFESSIONAL CATEGORY INDUCTEE: Amber Torrealba, Skimboarding; Randy Pobst, Auto racing
■ COLLEGE CATEGORY INDUCTEES: Lynisha Nelson, Basketball; Bryan Cook, Baseball; Steve Freeman, Soccer
■ PREP CATEGORY INDUCTEES: Julie Wollrath, Cross Country; Kaira Simmons, Track & Field; Cameron Harris, Jr., Football
■ AMATEUR/RECREATION CATEGORY INDUCTEE: Alli Penovich, Free Diving
■ COACHING CATEGORY INDUCTEES: Lee Mace, Football; Jim Oler, Basketball
■ SPORTS OFFICIAL INDUCTEE: Klaus Stafe
■ SPORTS JOURNALISM INDUCTEE: Capt. Eric Ciocher
■ SPORTS DEVELOPMENT INDUCTEE: Charles Clemente
■ LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT INDUCTEE: Larry Garrison
■ SPORTS AMBASSADOR AWARD INDUCTEE: Rusty Buchanan
■ CHALLENGER AWARD INDUCTEE: Jordan Episcopo
■ TEAM OF THE YEAR: Astronaut High School Bowling
■ LEGACY CHAMPIONS: Merritt Island Baseball, 1999-2000
■ SPECIAL TRIBUTE: Fred Gay
CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS TO THE INDUCTION CEREMONY
CLICK HERE TO SEE THE 2021 INDUCTEES PROFILES
SPACE COAST SPORTS HALL OF FAME CLASS OF 2020
• PROFESSIONAL CATEGORY INDUCTEES: Jamel Dean, Football; Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Wrestling; Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, Football; Mark Lake, Skateboarding; Jawaan Taylor, Football
• COLLEGE CATEGORY INDUCTEES: Derek Hamm, Football; Paulette King, Basketball; Dylan Lewis, Soccer; Melanie Murphy, Softball
• PREP CATEGORY INDUCTEES: Lexy Denaburg, Volleyball; Apryl Bigham Nickson, Swimming; Andi Sellers, Soccer
• AMATEUR/RECREATION CATEGORY INDUCTEE: Peter Blount, Track & Field; Karina Villegas, Sled Hockey; Caylor Williams, Wrestling
• COACHING CATEGORY INDUCTEES: Sean Ballard, Wrestling; Doug Butler, Cross Country and Track; Aubin Goporo, Basketball; Gerald Hodgin, Football; Bill Sinclair, Softball; Don Smith, Basketball
• SPORTS DEVELOPMENT INDUCTEE: Loren McClanahan
• LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT INDUCTEE: Clint Hurdle
• SPORTS OFFICIAL INDUCTEES: Ted Ruta
• SPORTS JOURNALISM INDUCTEES: Steve Vaughn
• SPORTS DEVELOPMENT INDUCTEE: Judge A.B. Majeed
• SPORTS AMBASSADOR AWARD INDUCTEE: Congressman Bill Posey
• CHALLENGER AWARDS INDUCTEES: Brevard Special Olympics
• TEAM OF THE YEAR: Satellite High Cross Country
CLICK HERE TO SEE THE 2020 INDUCTEES PROFILES
Space Coast Daily created the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame in 2011 and has so far inducted more than 200 of Brevard County’s most outstanding athletes, coaches and sports personalities.
Serving on the committee are Space Coast Daily President & Publisher Tom Palermo, Partner Giles Malone, Editor-in-Chief Dr. Jim Palermo, Managing Editor Zach Clark, the Friday Night Locker Room’s Steve Wilson and Orville Susong, Sports Editor Juan Rodriguez, Social Media Director Matt O’Hern, Assistant Editor Jordan Rocco, Digital Producers Ron Lighthall, Gavin Keith and Michael Malone, Production Director Brian Dillon, Sports Broadcaster Daryl Durand and Amateur Athletic Union President Rusty Buchanan.
The main athletic building on the Melbourne Campus hosts the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame, as portraits of the Hall of Famers are displayed on the wall in the building’s main hallway that runs parallel to the gym and outside the athletic department offices.
CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS TO THE INDUCTION CEREMONY
CLICK HERE TO SEE THE MEMBERS OF THE SPACE COAST SPORTS HALL OF FAME
SPACE COAST DAILY TV: Tim Wakefield talks about his induction into the first class of the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame. Space Coast Daily created the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame in 2011 and has so far inducted more than 200 of Brevard County’s most outstanding athletes, coaches and sports personalities.