By Jennifer Van Tuyl
Big 12 Campus Correspondent
University of Oklahoma senior Taylor Griffin can be described as a high-flying, shot-blocking machine who can intimidate his competitors with his tenacious defense and glass-breaking dunks.
Off the court, the appearance-conscious Griffin can be described as trendy, classy and sporty.
Griffin’s rock-hard muscles and supreme athletic ability are noticed by fans during games. But what he’s most noted for by his teammates off the floor is his fashion sense.
Griffin was voted best-dressed by his Sooner teammates in a September player poll. Younger brother Blake Griffin said Taylor was hands down the best choice because he looks his best everywhere he goes.
“We’ve never seen him come to the gym looking like he just woke up,” Blake said. “Even when we have 6 a.m. workouts he will come in and it looks like he actually thought about what he put on.”
Taylor Griffin said there are many different sides to his style.
“I change it up,” he said. “I have a sporty, athletic style. But then I have an almost-metro style where I might wear something like a pea coat and a scarf.
“I don’t wear that a lot around the gym just because the guys will get on me for it,” he added.
An outfit would definitely not be complete without accessories. Griffin is especially fond of watches and sunglasses. He owns at least 10 watches and seven or eight pairs of sunglasses, his favorite being his Prada shades.
Griffin thinks he could translate his fashion sense into a possible career in designing. Blake Griffin sees that as a future possibility, but finds that Taylor could use his expertise better as a stylist because he knows how to make clothes come together.
The elder Griffin has helped teammate Orlando Allen, voted worst-dressed by the team, clean up his look and correct his biggest fashion faux pas - wearing navy blue and black together.
Allen appreciates the help and now focuses more on the colors he wears, but said that it is easier for Griffin to dress nice.
“When you’re Taylor and you’re a ‘pretty boy’ it’s easy to dress nice and make your clothes look nice,” a smiling Allen said. “I have to kind of work with mine.”
Griffin has also taken notice of the unique West Coast style of teammate Juan Pattillo and the game-day attire of assistant coach Ben Betts. He does not think there is a right or wrong style because people should express themselves as individuals.
Griffin was also voted best in the weight room and would love to one day be on the cover of Men’s Health magazine.
“That is a goal of mine,” Griffin said. “I would like to put myself in a position to be on the cover because it’s a cool magazine and you have to be in shape to be on it.”
Griffin’s basketball skill and his eye for fashion are not the only talents the 6-7, 238-pounder possesses. He stands out in the classroom; he was an Academic All-Big 12 second team selection as a sophomore and a junior.
School, basketball and fashion may not seem to go hand-in-hand, but together they represent what Griffin wants to be in life.
“My goal in life is to be a well-rounded person,” Griffin said. ”I think that is a valuable trait — to not just have strengths in certain areas, but to try to be the best that you can be in everything.”