Frederick Rankin Taylor
- Bats Left, Throws Right
- Height 6' 3", Weight 201 lb.
- School Ohio State University
- High School Lash High School
- Debut September 12, 1950
- Final Game September 27, 1952
- Born December 3, 1924 in Zanesville, OH USA
- Died January 6, 2002 in Columbus, OH USA
Fred Taylor is a member of the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. As a college basketball coach, he won 297 games in 18 seasons. He also won the 1960 NCAA title, took teams to four Final Fours, and won 8 conference titles.
Taylor, who helped lead the Ohio State University Buckeyes to the 1950 Big Ten Championship in basketball as a 6' 3" center, was also an All-American as a left-hand hitting first baseman on the baseball team. He entered pro baseball and from 1950 to 1952, he had trials with the Washington Senators, hitting .191 (9-for-47) in 22 games.
During this same period of time, Taylor spent four partial years in the minor leagues, all in AA and AAA ball. His best season came in 1951, when he hit for a .291 average with 8 home runs in 152 games for the Chattanooga Lookouts of the Southern Association. He ended his minor league time in 1953 with a career .261 hitting average and 40 home runs while appearing in 480 games.
Taylor returned to Columbus, OH to coach the freshman basketball team at Ohio State University in 1954 and took over the varsity in 1958. In 18 seasons as the Buckeyes coach, he had a record of 297-158 before retiring in 1976. Along with his 1960 NCAA championship team, he led the Buckeyes to the title game in both 1961 and 1962, losing both years to the Cincinnati Bearcats.
He later worked with a young Bob Costas on Big Ten Conference basketball broadcasts and was Bob Knight's assistant coach for the United States Pan American team in 1979. Taylor was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1986. He also authored a book, A Higher Court. He died on January 6, 2002, at 77 years of age.