ESPN repeatedly misidentifies NFL legend Fred Taylor at his son’s football game

Cameron Smith
Prep Rally

The Taylor family of famous running backs had a big weekend. On Friday, Kelvin Taylor, among the nation's most highly-hyped running backs, was featured on national TV when ESPN televised his Belle Glade (Fla.) Glades Day High football team's game against Yulee (Fla.) High. Two days later, Fred Taylor, Kelvin's father, was inducted into the "Pride of the Jaguars," the Jacksonville franchise's hall of fame.

Throughout it all, the family figured to be a prominent fixture on national sports TV. There was just one problem: The man that ESPN repeatedly showed as Fred Taylor during his son's game on Friday night was not, in fact, Fred Taylor.

As first pointed out by Jaguars blog Big Cat Country, Taylor's father was in attendance during Glades Day's 42-6 loss to Yulee, but it took the ESPN cameras quite awhile to correctly locate him.

Glades Day star and Florida commit Kelvin Taylor —
Glades Day star and Florida commit Kelvin Taylor —

The issue, it seems, was that someone involved in the game's production was convinced that a man who looked only slightly like Fred Taylor was, in fact, the greatest player in Jaguars team history.

The actual Fred Taylor is shown in the photo below from a period when he was still competing for Jacksonville.

The entire incident doesn't mean that the hype that has enveloped Kelvin Taylor will dissipate anytime soon. To the contrary, the Florida commitment's 34-carry, 222-yard performance in a loss will only continue to ratchet up the focus on his future, just as Yulee star and Alabama commitment Derrick Henry's 363 yards and six touchdowns will keep the spotlight on him.

Jaguars legend Fred Taylor — Getty
Jaguars legend Fred Taylor — Getty

Still, the misidentification is an embarrassing faux paus for a network which has gone to lengths to increase its high school coverage, though it has apparently been unable to do so with the same accuracy it attempts to hold for its other sports.

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