Star DE High on UM

When Greenbelt (Md.) Roosevelt standout defensive end Derrick Harvey was in 10th grade, he considered going out for the football team. "I was always a basketball player," Harvey said. "That's something I had always done. But I started thinking about playing football. I decided not to that year but then when my junior year came around, I had to try it."

The end result was interesting.

"I've always loved basketball," he said. "But when I started playing football, I actually found something that was even more fun. I wanted to be a football player. I don't even play much basketball anymore because I'm so focused on football."

In his first year of organized football, Harvey registered 85 tackles and 13 sacks. That wasn't enough, he said.

"I want to get at least 25 this year," he said. "We have a guy on the otherside that will help take away double teams from me. Plus I played last year at like 198. Now I'm right at 230. If they thought I was tough to block last year, wait till they see what I got for them this year."

Harvey is an athletic freak, as he's putting up some pretty impressive numbers.

"I'm benching 335 right now," he said. "I want to keep getting stronger and get to around 250 for when I go to college. I went to the Maryland camp recently and I was 6-5, 230 and ran a 4.69. When I did my vertical jump, they didn't believe my jump. It was 39 1/2 inches and they actually made me do it a couple times because they thought it was off. They measured my wingspan and stuff too and it was 83 [inches]. I had to show them what was up (laughing)."

Harvey, who is still waiting on test scores to come back, has emerged as one of the most heavily recruited defensive linemen in America.

"I have about 20 scholarship offers right now and I'm expecting to get even more," he said. "My top ones right now are Miami, Florida, Southern Cal, Arizona State, Maryland, Virginia, and Tennessee. Those are like my top seven and they've all offered."

Despite not having a single favorite, Harvey talked very highly of the Hurricanes.

"I couldn't really tell you who the top one is right now but I know Miami's right up there," he said. "They came to my school in May and then called me on the phone. I ended up talking to a lot of the coaches. They're the No. 1 program right now. They give you a chance to play for national championships every year, they send a lot of players into the draft, and it's a place that I'll definitely be taking one of my five visits to."

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