"It's real intense so far," said Taylor of fall practice. "There's a lot of hitting this year and a lot of younger guys are stepping up. Now that I am one of the seniors on defense I am trying to be a leader on the field and in the locker room. We have some young guys who were on the bench last year that are making plays now. I am trying to do my best to help them get ready for the season."
JaMichael had a strong junior season that led to some early college interest. A good spring brought even more suitors.
"I don't have any offers yet, but I have a lot of interest," said Taylor. "I am getting a lot of interest from Mississippi State, Southern Miss, UNA (North Alabama) and South Alabama. My coach told me a lot of other schools have a lot of interest in me, so I think once the season starts I will be even more on the radar. I was kind of late getting out there."
This summer the talented linebacker took his show on the road in an effort to learn more about the schools that are recruiting him. He was unable to hit all of his planned destinations, but he plans to visit those schools during the season.
"I camped at Auburn and Troy and I am visiting Mississippi State and LSU soon," said JaMichael. "I am wanting to go see some games this season and check out the campuses. I know I am going to see the Mississippi State game with Auburn."
Growing up in the heart of football country, Taylor developed a strong attraction to the schools of the SEC. A trio of schools from the SEC West sit atop JaMichael's pecking order.
"My top schools are Auburn, Mississippi State and LSU," said Taylor. "I like the coaches and the atmosphere at all of those schools. They are all in the SEC and I could see myself playing at any one of those schools."
JaMichael is the second cousin of one of the SEC's top tacklers of the last decade Vanderbilt alum Jamie Winbourne. Taylor has used Jamie as a sounding board and a mentor of sorts.
"He told me to give 110% every play and to never let up," said Taylor. "He said to hustle on and off and the field and always be a good leader."
One of the ways JaMichael is leading at his high school is in the classroom. With some hard work, Taylor could graduate early.
"School is going great," said Taylor. "I only have three classes left, so I may be able to get out in December. That would let me go to college for the spring and go through spring practice. That is what I am hoping to do."
JaMichael is focused on making a better life for his family. He wants to ensure that his mother can be a big part of his college life.
"It's just me and my mom, so I want to stay closer to home," said Taylor. "I know I want to major in architecture. I am real good at drafting. Mississippi State and Auburn are two of the best in the country with that and that's another reason they are some of my top schools."