Subscribe for 33¢ / day

Former Lompoc High School football and basketball standout Michael Taylor died Friday morning, Lompoc football coach Andrew Jones has confirmed.

Taylor was a receiver and defensive back for the Lompoc football team before graduating in 2016. He was also a guard on Lompoc's basketball team.

Jones confirmed Taylor's passing Friday evening. Taylor celebrated his 20th birthday on Feb. 14.

One of Taylor's best games in a Lompoc football uniform came in the first round of the CIF playoffs against Paso Robles in 2015. 

Playing under the Huyck Stadium lights, Taylor made nine tackles and intercepted a Paso Robles pass, helping the Braves to a 35-34 win.

Taylor also had big playoff performances on the hardwood. In a Feb. 17, 2016 CIF Southern Section Division 4A first-round game against Animo Leadership, Taylor scored 15 points and added three assists and three rebounds in the 89-37 win.

Taylor was known as the Braves' defensive stopper on the basketball court.

Taylor also played in the Kiwanis Central Coast All-Star Basketball Spectacular in 2016 and had a game-high five steals in the South's 105-96 win over the North.

There was an outpouring of support and messages of condolence as the news of Taylor's death began to spread.

Jones posted a picture of Taylor in a Lompoc High football uniform with the caption: "Gonna miss this kids smile, but I’ll never forget it."

Get breaking news sent instantly to your inbox

Former Lompoc quarterback Torey Sims formed an electric duo with Taylor on both the gridiron and the basketball court. 

Sims also posted in Taylor's memory on Twitter.

As did the official account of Lompoc High football. The post read: "Our hearts are broken. One of my favorite kids to coach. Always smiling, great attitude. Gone too soon. Rest In Peace, Michael."

Marcus Nix, a former Lompoc baseball and football player, posted: "I Miss my brother more than anything. Thank you for always being you and thank you for being my closest friend. You’ve touched many lives in ways you couldn’t imagine. Love you forever."

Lompoc football star Toa Taua posted to Twitter Saturday morning: "Mind still in denial, heart crushed .. long as the sun is shining I know that’s you smiling down with that famous smile we all can’t stop thinking about. I love you brother boy, rest easy .... ima finish those plans we had."

The cause of death was not known at press time Saturday.

Joe Bailey is the sports editor at Lee Central Coast Newspapers. Contact him with tips and story ideas at or (805) 739-2239. Follow him on Twitter at