Taylorville High School 
Sports Hall of Fame
P O R T R A I T

NATHAN SHANKS

    Nathan Shanks graduated from Taylorville High School in 2003 and not only earned 12 varsity letters in four sports but set school records along the way.

    As a football player, Shanks was a varsity starter for three years. Being touted as the starting running back the beginning of his junior season in 2001, he responded by setting a school record, rushing for 1235 yards in 168 carries for a 7.4 yard average. He also led the team in scoring with 74 points. Helping the Tornadoes to an 8-3 record and reaching the second round of the IHSA Playoffs, Shanks was named team MVP and earned a spot on the Central State Eight All-Conference first team. 
    The following year, Shanks carried the ball 201 times, averaging 5.8 yards a carry while totaling 1165 yards only 70 yards shy of his record setting junior season. Again, the Tornadoes advanced to the second round of the IHSA play-offs. Shanks repeated as team MVP and was again selected to the Central State Eight All-Conference First Team.

    Setting a Taylorville career record, he rushed for 2919 yards on 456 carries. He also is second in career touchdowns with 29 and second in career scoring with 188 total points. His career total offense of 3,414 yards is number 1 for running backs and number 3 over all.

    Nathan Shanks was named to the “Top 100 Players” in Illinois by the Champaign News Gazette and was offered and accepted a scholarship to attend Northwestern University and play football for the Wildcats under coach Pat Fitzgerald.

    Nathan Shanks was not a one sport standout at Taylorville High School. A letter winner his freshman year on the Tornadoes basketball team, injury prevented him from continuing on the hard court; but it didn’t prevent him from playing baseball and running track. Lettering four years on the baseball team, he was an outstanding pitcher, being selected the team’s most valuable pitcher his sophomore year. But hitting became Nathans’ strong suit as he led the team in hitting with a .397 average his junior year and .372 his senior season. Both performances earned him Central State Eight All- Conference First Team selections both years.

    Nathans record setting wasn’t preserved just for football. As a four year letter winner in track, Nathan set a school record in the discus.