Gary Harris Update

Larry Vaught catches up on the recruitment of Gary Harris with Hamilton Southeastern coah Brian Satterfield. Harris is making his official visit to Kentucky this weekend.

He knows it's hard to compare players, but Hamilton Southeastern (Ind.) coach Brian Satterfield has a good comparison for his star player, guard Gary Harris. It's former Indiana prep standout Eric Gordon, who now plays with the Los Angeles Clippers.

"The only thing Eric is better at is that he's more consistent with his shot. Gary can get streaky," said Satterfield. "Eric can step out to 30 feet (and shoot). Gary cannot do that. But if Gary would just concentrate on basketball, that shooting would get better. When he gets away from basketball for a few months and does not shoot, his shot is not as consistent. When he gets to the college level and just focuses on basketball in the fall, everybody will see an even better side of Gary.

"Not everybody knows this, either, but he has just turned 17. He will graduate as a 17 year old. We have a kid committed to Michigan who is a junior and is eight days older than Gary. But Gary obviously is a very, very sharp kid."

Harris is making his official visit to Kentucky this weekend. He's already been to Purdue and Indiana and will go to Michigan State in two weeks.

"I think ideally he would like to sign soon and would prefer to take care of it before our season even starts," Satterfield said. "But what's tough is that his last visit is just a few days before the signing period starts. He is playing football and his team has a great chance to make a run on the football side. The state finals are the weekend after Thanksgiving, so that could make it hard for him to sign early."

The 6-4, 190-pound Harris plays receiver and has 54 catches for 860 yards and 14 touchdowns for his team that is 8-1 going into its final regular-season game Friday night. Last year Hamilton Southeastern finished 10-2. He's good enough that schools such as Notre Dame, Kentucky, Iowa, Indiana and Purdue have offered him scholarships. He had four touchdown catches in one game in 2010 and set a school record with 189 receiving yards in last week's win.

"I was watching the highlights and he came across the middle to catch one pass, made a couple of moves and outraced everybody to the end zone," Satterfield said.

In basketball, he's a five-star prospect and rated as the nation's No. 2 shooting guard prospect by Scout.com.

"We try to promote multi-sports athletes at our school. We love sharing athletes in football and basketball and do our offseason workouts together," Satterfield said. "The football coach hardly sees Gary in the summer, and I don't either because of all the camps he has.

"I think he spends so much time working on basketball that just to get out there in football gives him to get away from basketball, which is good because he comes in refreshed and ready to go for basketball. He has to get his basketball legs, but he gets ready in a hurry. Once he goes to the next level and just focuses on basketball, his whole game will take another step up.

Satterfield thinks playing football helps differentiate Harris from some other highly-rated basketball prospects.

"He gets in the weight room and takes advantage of that on the basketball court," Satterfield said. "Last year we had a 6-5 guy that could jump out of the gym, but Gary was better in the post because of the way he could use his body and not back down from contact.

"He is so versatile on both ends of the court. If he has a bigger guy on him, he takes him on the perimeter and scores. If he has a smaller player on him, he can post him up. We don't have a true post player this year, so Gary will have to rebound and scrap for the ball and he will do that for us.

"His versatility is what the college coaches all like. With what he can do, he is one of those special players. He can guard the point guard or in the post because of that versatility and strength. He can play about any position you need. He can play point guard if needed. Basically he's a shooting guard, but he can get in the post. He has the strongest hands I?have ever seen, too. If he gets the ball, it is his."

Satterfield says Kentucky started showing interest in Harris about a year ago with phone calls and e-mails. Coach John Calipari has been to see Harris at football practice and made an in-home visit.

"Now Gary is trying to learn all he can and get a lot of things figured out," Satterfield said. "I don't know exactly what all is going on because he's so busy, but after his Michigan State visit we will talk about a lot of things. But you can see with Kentucky coming in and a lot of things the family talks about that he wants to do that it has made an impact. I know since they have showed real interest that his head is spinning because of the quality of program it is."


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