When Kelvin Taylor became Florida’s all-time leading rusher last season, there were a few things he expected to receive for his accomplishment.
A game ball.
A celebration with his Glades Day teammates.
A congratulations from his family, friends and fans.
And a ton of newspaper headlines.
He even expected to hear from Emmitt Smith, who had held the record since 1986 and said he would do something for Taylor once it was broken.
But there was one gesture that caught him completely off guard — a letter from a U.S. Congressman.
Alcee Hastings, the Representative for Florida’s 23rd congressional district, wrote Taylor shortly after he surpassed Smith.
“I am very pleased that this great feat was accomplished by a young man from my district,” Hastings wrote. “Your remarkable accomplishment will be celebrated by everyone in the Glades area … You are an excellent role model for us all, especially your peers. You are the kind of person to whom everyone can point with respect and admiration.”
Taylor shared a picture of the letter on twitter Sunday, although he’s had it since November.
“I’ve had it for awhile, but I just decided to take a picture of it up on my wall and show people,” Taylor said. “I love that letter. I have it right above my bed and I look at it every night.”
As soon as the photo hit twitter, Taylor said his UF followers were thrilled.
“The Gator fans show me so much love on twitter,” he said. “They are the best. I posted a picture of that letter and like 30 of them tweeted me back right away. I love having that support.”
The Florida commit has gathered several awards and accolades over the course of his high school career, but Hastings’ letter is special to him.
“I’m very blessed to have it,” he said. “Never in my wildest dream would I think someone in Congress knew about me. It feels great to know that people like him are out there cheering for you. I’m very humbled that he took time out of his busy schedule to write me that letter.”
Since his commitment to Florida in February, Taylor has been focused on his current Gator team.
“Getting another state title is all that’s on my mind,” said Taylor, who still speaks regularly with UF receivers coach Aubrey Hill and plans to visit this weekend. “So I’ve just been working out for my senior season. I’m trying to take over high school football in 2012.”
Taylor is 3,118 yards away from breaking the national mark of 11,232 yards set by Ken Hall of Sugar Land (Texas) in 1953.