|Current college||University of Missouri-Columbia (2009-)|
|High school||Hallsville (2005-2009)|
|Stats||HDWhite • NAQT|
Taylor Smith is a quizbowl club member at Missouri, formerly of Hallsville.
High School Career
Taylor emerged as a strong player early in his high school career. As a sophomore in 2007, he led his Hallsville team to a district victory over the South Callaway squad led by his quizbowl archrival Alex Dzurick. At the MSHSAA state competition that year, he earned a 7th-place spot on the Class 3 All-State team with 7 tossups per game. With the formation of the Mid-Missouri Conference in 2006, a conference tournament became a fixture and Taylor earned a berth on the All-Conference team as well.
During Taylor's junior year, he again earned a spot on the All-Conference squad. Hallsville was able to champion Class 3 District 4 (again over South Callaway) in 2008, and Taylor's performance improved to 11.4 tpg with a 3rd place finish on the 2008 All-State team. An invite from Dzurick led Taylor and his teammate Kelson Rosbach on a trip to Kirksville for the Truman State mirror of Zot Bowl in August 2008. Taylor answered a total of 10 tossups during the first segment of the day (double that of Dzurick) and two more during the second, shorter reshuffled segment.
During his senior year, Taylor earned the high scorer award at the Warrenton Warrior Classic. With the implementation of a sectionals round for the state playoffs, Taylor was faced with another round of games to play in order to advance to state. With former rival Dzurick moderating the sectionals matches, Taylor and his Hallsville teammates managed to win the first two games of a best-2-of-3 set against School of the Osage to attend the state championship for a third time. Watched by a Missouri team looking forward to a possible new player, Taylor dominated the individuals of Class 3 with an impressive 13.6 tpg. (For comparison's sake, only Kevin Lang of Tarkio in Class 1 had a higher score at 15.4 tpg, and the 2nd-ranked player in Class 3, Matt Prince of Salem, had 8.3 tpg. Future Missouri teammates Colten Ross and Brandon Roney had 8 and 7.2 tpg, respectively.)
University of Missouri
Taylor was quickly brought into the fold at Missouri due to the longstanding rivalry with Dzurick, Missouri's president. He served as a scorekeeper at the 2009 Missouri Fall Academic Tournament, though he has yet to attend a tournament as a member of the Missouri squad.