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#13 Zac Taylor
Position: Quarterback
Height: 6'2"
Weight: 210
Year: Senior
City/State: Norman, Okla.
High School: Norman
Other College: Butler County CC
  • NU Single-Season Record Holder for Passing Yards (2,486), Completions (233) and Attempts (399)
  • NU-Single Game Record Holder for Passing Yards (431), Completions (36), Attempts (55) and Total Offense (433)
  • 2006 Maxwell Award Watch List
  • 2006 Manning Award Watch List
  • 2006 Preseason Second-Team All-Big 12 (Lindy’s)
  • Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week (10-3 vs. Iowa State)
  • SI.com National Player of the Week (11-28 vs. Colorado)
  • 2006 Big 12 Commissioner’s Spring Academic Honor Roll
  • 2006 Brook Berringer Citizenship Team

2006 (Senior)

Senior quarterback Zac Taylor guided the Nebraska offense for 26 straight games over the past two seasons, and posted record-setting passing numbers. Taylor’s career was highlighted by his selection as the 2006 Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year.

 

After a successful first season at the helm of Nebraska’s West Coast Offense in 2005, Taylor developed into one of the nation’s top signal callers as a senior. He ranked third in the Big 12 Conference and 20th nationally in passing efficiency.

 

Despite being in a Nebraska uniform for just two seasons, Taylor concluded his Husker career as one of the most successful quarterbacks in school history, owning nearly every NU game, season and career passing record. In the process Taylor moved past great Husker quarterbacks such as Turner Gill, Tommie Frazier, Eric Crouch, Vince Ferragamo and Dave Humm in the Nebraska record books.

 

A native of Norman, Okla., Taylor directed one of the nation’s most potent offenses in 2006, helping Nebraska rank 14th nationally in total offense, 17th in scoring offense and 23rd in passing. He finished 2006 with a school-record 3,197 passing yards and a Husker-record 26 passing touchdowns against just eight interceptions. His 3,165 yards of total offense also set a new Nebraska single-season standard.

 

In setting several season records, Taylor also established Husker career records for passing yards (5,850), completions (470) and attempts (821). A touchdown pass in the Cotton Bowl gave Taylor 45 career touchdown passes, which was two better than the previous school record of 43 TD passes by Tommie Frazier.

 

Taylor efficiently led the Nebraska offense, compiling three streaks of 80 or more passes without an interception in 2006. He threw for 200 yards or more in 10 games, and had two or more touchdown passes eight times in 2006.

 

Taylor’s record-setting performance in leading Nebraska to the Big 12 North Division title earned him numerous accolades. He was selected as the first-team All-Big 12 quarterback and the league’s Offensive Player of the Year by the Big 12 Coaches, AP and every paper in the region who selects an all-conference squad. He also earned the respect of his teammates by being voted as Nebraska’s 2006 Offensive MVP, after being voted as one of three team captains earlier in the fall. 

 

Taylor threw for 287 yards and three touchdowns in the opener against Louisiana Tech, his 10th straight game with a scoring pass. Taylor registered one of the best games of his career against Nicholls State by recording the eighth-best day in Husker history in terms of passing efficiency. He completed 19-of-23 attempts for 202 yards and a career-high four touchdowns with no interceptions. Taylor also became just the seventh Husker to surpass 3,000 career yards passing.

 

Against Troy, Taylor completed 14-of-17 passes for 268 yards and a touchdown while leading the Huskers to another efficient performance featuring a season-high 597 yards of total offense. Taylor led Nebraska to a 39-32 overtime win over Kansas with 395 passing yards, the No. 2 passing total in school history. Taylor tied his career high with four touchdown passes, including three of 75 yards or more, the first time that had occurred at a Big 12 Conference school.  In overtime, Taylor calmly completed a 21-yard pass to Nate Swift to set up Nebraska’s game-winning touchdown run. Taylor’s average of 26.33 yards per completion marked a single-game school record.

 

Taylor guided Nebraska to back-to-back road wins with efficient passing performances at Iowa State and Kansas State. He then set Nebraska’s career completions record against Texas while moving within four yards of Eric Crouch for third place on the career passing yardage chart. He completed 15-of-28 attempts for 277 yards with touchdown passes to Maurice Purify (63 yards) and Brandon Jackson (48 yards) to fuel the Huskers’ near-upset of No. 5 Texas.

 

In Nebraska’s 34-20 win over Missouri, Taylor passed for 208 yards and two scores, then had a clutch performance at Texas A&M to clinch the Big 12 North. Taylor led the Huskers on a game-winning drive with under two minutes left, capped by a nine-yard touchdown pass to Maurice Purify. Taylor threw for 267 yards and broke the Huskers’ all-time career passing record in the game. He also broke the single-season touchdown passes record on a four-yard TD pass to Todd Peterson in the second quarter.

 

Taylor tied Tommie Frazier’s NU career record for touchdown passes with a pair of scoring strikes against Colorado, while also breaking his own single-season passing record. Taylor attempted a season-high 50 passes against his hometown school in the Big 12 title game, and threw for 282 yards, his third-highest total of the season. He capped his career by hitting on 14-of-26 pass attempts for 126 yards and a 14-yard touchdown pass to Nate Swift in the Cotton Bowl, marking his 11th consecutive game with a touchdown pass.

2005 (Junior)
Taylor took control of the quarterback job in the spring and started all 12 games. Taylor played every snap at quarterback in the first nine-plus games, before missing the latter part of the fourth quarter against Kansas State. Taylor continued to progress throughout the season and capped the year by guiding the Huskers to three straight victories. Taylor finished the season among the top passers in the Big 12 Conference and set numerous school passing and total offensive records.

Taylor was at his best in Big 12 Conference play. After completing 42 percent of his attempts in non-league play, Taylor connected on 59.4 percent of his passes in Big 12 games. He also threw for 260.9 yards per game in Big 12 play, ranking second only to Texas Tech’s Cody Hodges.

Taylor posted the top two single-game passing efforts in school history, including the 431 yards against Iowa State and torching Colorado for 392 yards in the regular-season finale. Taylor threw for more than 200 yards six times in 2005, and had two touchdown passes in seven of eight Big 12 games. He finished the season with 19 touchdown passes, the most by a Husker quarterback in 16 seasons and just one off the school single-season record.

Taylor capped the regular season with four touchdowns and no interceptions in victories over Kansas State and Colorado, then threw for a career-best three touchdown passes in the Alamo Bowl victory over Michigan. Taylor was also excellent at distributing the ball. Five Husker receivers caught 25 or more passes in 2005, and Taylor connected with a total of 14 receivers on the season.Taylor’s 2005 Game-by-Game

Maine–Taylor compiled 192 passing yards in his debut as Nebraska’s starting quarterback, completing 15-of-36 attempts. He connected with wide receiver Frantz Hardy on a career-long 73-yard completion in the second quarter.

Wake Forest–Against his former team, Taylor threw his first career touchdown pass on a four-yard strike to Hardy to finish off the Huskers’ opening drive of the second half. He completed 14-of-33 attempts for 114 yards with one interception.

Pittsburgh–Taylor scored the game’s only touchdown on a one-yard run in the second quarter of a tough 7-6 defensive victory. Through the air, he completed 10-of-20 passes for 93 yards.

Iowa State–Taylor set single-game school records for pass attempts (55), completions (36), yardage (431) and total offense (433) in the Huskers’ double-overtime win. He added two touchdown passes, including the game winner in double-overtime to I-back Cory Ross. Taylor earned Big 12 Offensive Player-of-the-Week honors for his performance.

Texas Tech–Taylor helped fuel a furious Husker comeback that fell just short with 229 yards on 21-of-35 passing and two touchdowns. He connected on a pair of scores to wide receiver Terrence Nunn just over five minutes apart to give NU a fourth-quarter lead after trailing 21-0 midway through the second quarter.

Baylor–Taylor notched another efficient game, throwing for 168 yards and two scores with no interceptions on 18-of-32 passing. He added a career-high 30 yards rushing in engineering a 23-14 Nebraska victory.

Missouri–Taylor completed 22-of-43 passes for 281 yards and two touchdowns.

Oklahoma–Against his hometown school, Taylor completed 25-of-45 attempts for 249 yards and two touchdowns.

Kansas–Taylor connected on 14-of-26 passes for 117 yards and one touchdown.

Kansas State–Taylor broke NU’s 33-year-old single-season passing record with 220 yards on a 21-of-31 performance. He set the record on a 34-yard touchdown pass to Nate Swift, one of two scoring strikes to Swift during the game. He connected with eight different receivers without throwing an interception, before leaving the game with a concussion in the fourth quarter.

Colorado–Taylor put together the second-best passing day in Nebraska history with 392 yards passing against the Buffs. Taylor completed 27-of-43 passes in the game, including touchdown passes of 19 yards to Cory Ross and 21 yards to Nate Swift. He also helped Nebraska by scrambling for 16 yards in the game. His performance earned him National Player-of-the-Week honors from SI.com.

Michigan–Taylor guided Nebraska to a 32-28 victory, throwing for 167 yards and a season-high three touchdowns. Taylor capped his junior season by rallying Nebraska from a 28-17 fourth-quarter deficit, capped by a 13-yard touchdown pass to Terrence Nunn with 5:56 remaining in the game.

Before Nebraska (Norman HS/Wake Forest/Butler County CC)
Taylor had a successful 2004 season at Butler County Community College in El Dorado, Kansas, and was one of three players from the school to sign with Nebraska in 2005. Taylor passed for nearly 3,000 yards and 29 touchdowns to earn second-team NJCAA All-America honors. His leadership helped the Grizzlies to the NJCAA championship game, where they lost to Pearl River (Miss.) JC.

Taylor began his collegiate career at Wake Forest. After redshirting in 2002, Taylor served as the Demon Deacons' backup quarterback in 2003. He played in three games and completed the only pass he attempted.

Taylor passed for 1,950 yards and 16 touchdowns as a senior at Norman High. Taylor earned first-team all-district and all-conference honors in high school, where he was coached by Butch Peters. Taylor set 12 school records at Norman High, including career passing yards and career touchdowns. Taylor chose Nebraska after also visiting Memphis and Marshall.

Personal
Zac was born on May 10, 1983, and is the son of Sherwood and Julie Taylor. Sherwood played defensive back at Oklahoma, lettering from 1977 to 1979. Sherwood Taylor also served as a graduate assistant coach at Oklahoma and as a defensive backs coach at Kansas State from 1984 to 1986. Zac's younger sister, Katheryn, competes in swimming in the Special Olympics in Oklahoma.

Taylor spent part of his 2005 summer as an intern in the Huskers' Athletic Development Office, learning the administrative side of collegiate athletics. In addition to assisting with Nebraska’s team hospital visits, Taylor has volunteered his time with numerous outreach activities, including being a volunteer with the Special Olympics, and serving as a speaker at Nebraska’s 2006 "School is Cool" Celebration, a motivational program for all Lincoln eighth graders.

Year

G

Att.

Cmp.

Int.

Pct.

Yds.

Y/A

Y/G

LP

TD

Eff.R.

2005

12/12

430

237

12

.551

2,653

6.2

221.1

73

19

115.94

2006 14/14 391 233 8 .596 3,197 8.2 228.4 78 26 146.12

Totals

26/26

821

470

20

.572

5,850

7.1

225.0

78

45

130.32


Rushing: 129-(-59)-2 TD; long-24 vs. Kansas State, 2006

Single-Game Bests:
Pass Attempts55 vs. Iowa State, 2005 (school record)
Pass Completions36 vs. Iowa State, 2005 (school record)
Passing Yards–431 vs. Iowa State, 2005 (school record)
Passing Touchdowns–4 vs. Nicholls State, vs. Kansas, 2006
Long Pass–78 yards to Frantz Hardy vs. Kansas, 2006
Rushing Yards–30 vs. Baylor, 2005
Total Offense–433 vs. Iowa State, 2005 (school record)

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