<
>

Ex-Bolingbrook star Taylor transfers to SIU

CHICAGO -- Former Wisconsin freshman guard Diamond Taylor, who was kicked off the Badgers team in September after being arrested for burglary, has enrolled at Southern Illinois University and will join the men's basketball team, according to Mike Mullins, his former Illinois Wolves' club coach.

Taylor and a Wisconsin teammate were arrested on charges of burglary and possession of stolen property after being caught with iPods, a cell phone and more than $400 in cash after leaving a Wisconsin campus dorm in early September.

Taylor has since been released from his scholarship by Wisconsin. He will begin classes in two weeks at Southern Illinois, according to Mullins.

"It'll be a great opportunity for him to get back into basketball and on the road to doing positive things with his life," said Mullins, who has had a number of former players, including his son Bryan, play for the Salukis. "He made a foolish mistake, and he has paid the penalty for it. There's no excusing it. He's accepting the consequences."

Taylor, a 6-foot-4 guard, was considered a top-150 recruit by many scouting services coming out of Bolingbrook High School last year. Taylor spent three years of high school at St. Joseph in Westchester, Ill.

"He's long and bouncy," Mullins said. "He can shoot the ball. He's athletic. He was going to be a very good player in the Big Ten, and I think he'll be a very good player in the Missouri Valley. He becomes a 2010 recruit for them. If you had him as a 2010 guard, you'd have him pretty high. He'll have four years of eligibility left."

Scott Powers covers high school and college sports for ESPNChicago.com and can be reached at spowers@espnchicago.com.