The sports journalist and broadcaster Taylor Rooks was born on 22nd May 1992, in St. Louis, Missouri, USA. In 2010, she matriculated from Peachtree Ridge High School in Suwanee, Georgia, and went on to study at her parents’ alma mater, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, with a major in broadcast journalism.
While at University, Taylor worked with Scout.com and covered many national football and basketball recruiting stories. Aged 19, she made her first appearance on the CBS Sports Network while reporting on the WBB Pre-NIT Championship. The brown-eyed beauty interned with Comcast SportsNet Chicago, PGA Tour, and Fox Sports/Scout.com while at college and received numerous scholarships for her excellent grades; however, she briefly considered leaving it all behind to focus on a modeling career.
Athleticism runs in Taylor’s family, as her father, Thomas Rooks, is the top rushing leader for the Illinois Fighting Illini. One of her uncles, Marv Woodson, played for the New Orlean Saints and Pittsburgh Steelers in the National Football League (NFL), while, her other uncle, Lou Brock, was a professional baseball left fielder and Hall of Famer. Taylor’s sister, Ryan, was also interested in sports while studying at the University of Georgia, and was on the college cheerleading and swimming teams.
In August 2012, Taylor began covering Illinois football and basketball events for scout.com, with many of her stories making national news outlets. The journalist broke stories regarding Jayson Tatum, Cliff Alexander, Aaron Jordan and other players, which helped boost her journalistic prestige.
After leaving scout.com in May 2014 and graduating college the following month, Taylor began a new job as an on-air reporter, host, and correspondent for the Big Ten Network. Her nightly appearances in “BTN Live”, a popular sports show featuring Glen Mason, Rick Pizzo and other analysts, was a fantastic opportunity for the former model to garner a larger following.
One of Taylor’s roles in the show was to interact with fans and discuss trending social media topics; it goes without saying that she was often required to travel for work. The St. Louis native also hosted the Women’s Sports Report with Lisa Byington, covering all female sports events for the network.
In August 2016, Taylor began working for SportsNet New York as their newest host, reporter, and anchor. During the 2016-2017 college football season, she was also a sideline reporter for CBS Sports Network.
Although Taylor’s work ethic and bubbly personality are to thank for her large social media following, her controversial relationship with the actor Jesse Williams also played a part. In May 2018, the former couple sparked dating speculation when they were spotted at one of Kevin Hart’s comedy shows in Atlantic City, NJ. In the same month, Us Weekly confirmed that the pair were a dating.
As Taylor and Jesse kept their relationship so private, it’s unclear when or why they broke up. The “Grey’s Anatomy” star has had a pretty turbulent dating history, as he was accused of cheating on his now ex-wife, Aryn Drake-Lee, with his co-star Minka Kelly. Jesse and Aryn met in the mid-2000s, long before the actor became famous, and separated in 2017 after five years of marriage; meanwhile, he was confirmed to be dating Minka in July of the same year, following months of speculation.
Finally, the “Secret Headquarters” actor addressed the cheating rumors without actually confirming if he had been unfaithful to Aryn during their marriage. In the end, he and Minka broke up in January 2018, and he was seen with Taylor mere months later, so it’s perhaps normal that people had their doubts about Jesse’s intentions with the journalist, or a possible overlap in his relationships.
Taylor and Jesse’s relationship got off to an unlucky start, as in June 2018 the actor was ordered to pay his wife over $50,000 a month in child support – and another $50,000 a month in spousal support. Months later, he filed an appeal, claiming that he was paying too much money. It would take Aryn and Jesse years to finalize their divorce, as the real estate broker wanted full custody of her and Jesse’s children due to his busy acting career.
Finally, Aryn and Jesse reached an agreement in October 2020. Although Aryn didn’t get full custody of her and Jesse’s two children, the actor was forced to pay $40,000 a month in child support and a further $100,000 in spousal support. By this point, Taylor was well out of the picture, as Jesse was in the middle of a two-year-long relationship with the actress Taylour Paige, who he began dating in May 2019.
Regarding Taylor’s current dating life, she hasn’t been in a confirmed public relationship with anyone since Jesse. However, in February 2022 news outlets began reporting the possibility of a casual relationship between the journalist and Jack Dorsey, the billionaire former CEO of Twitter. Taylor and Jack were spotted leaving a Drake concert together, sending social media into a frenzy.
Although the stunning broadcaster doesn’t wish to publicize her love life, she’s got plenty of friends in high places, and was recently invited to billionaire Michael Rubin’s Independence Day all-white party. From musicians and athletes to tech moguls and entrepreneurs, the party was full of famous faces, with some netizens suggesting that Taylor is romantically linked to one of the attendees.
Taylor mainly uses her social media for work-related posts, and to promote her upcoming projects. Nevertheless, the African-American broadcaster isn’t averse to posting the odd glamorous selfie or vacation photo. Despite having over 600,000 Instagram followers, the former model appears to be disinterested in working with online brands, or becoming an influencer.
It remains unclear if Taylor is involved in philanthropical work or not, but we’re aware that she hosted the 9th annual Giants of Africa gala in December 2022. Described as “an evening dinner full of celebrations, conversations, musical performances, and conversations about Nelson Mandela’s impact”, the gala helps raise awareness for Giants of Africa’s mission: to equip African youth with resources, education, life skills, and basketball training.