clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

A swimmer out of water

Josh Taylor still a big part of Brighton's team despite injury

Brighton High's Josh Taylor watches the swim team warm up at Cottonwood Heights Recreation Center. He attends practices whenever he can.
Brighton High's Josh Taylor watches the swim team warm up at Cottonwood Heights Recreation Center. He attends practices whenever he can.
Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret Morning News

If you offered Josh Taylor anything right now, he wouldn't hesitate to tell you exactly what he wants.

Having spent much of his life swimming in a pool, Taylor has been sitting on the sidelines during the past two seasons because of a back injury.

But even though his back injury has kept him from swimming, Taylor remains a big part of the Bengals' swim team. He attends practices with the team whenever he can and is present to cheer on his teammates at meets.

"He's our biggest motivator," said coach Todd Etherington. "He tries to be as involved as he can."

With months left in his high school swimming career, this Brighton senior is hoping to simply get back into the pool.

"It would be the greatest thing in the world," said Taylor. "That's the thing I'm hoping for more than anything."

After competing at state his freshman year, Taylor returned the following season and did well enough in early-season meets. Soon after, however, he developed his back injury and it's kept him out of swimming since.

For all his back problems, though, Taylor said he's hoping that an upcoming surgery can correct the problem. The procedure he's considering would implant a device in his back that would, in effect, shock his back and minimize the pain.

"Kind of like a pacemaker," he said.

Taylor didn't know exactly when that surgery would be performed, but he remains optimistic it can be completed in time for him to swim at the state meet this February.

In the meantime, he'll continue sticking around practices and waiting for his next chance to swim. In addition to offering encouragement to teammates at practice, Etherington has allowed Taylor to also do some coaching.

"He's helped me out with the younger age groups," said Etherington.

As far as Taylor's concerned, if he can't get in the pool and swim competitively, he wants to get as close as he can.

"This is my life," he said.


E-mail: drasmussen@desnews.com