Harris Visits, Adds NC State Offer

Raleigh (NC) Word of God star point guard Blake Harris updates his recruitment.

Talented point guard Blake Harris signed with Washington in November, and received rave reviews from Washington head coach Lorenzo Romar.  

“Blake Harris is very unique," Romar said of Harris in the fall.  "First of all, he’s very, very underrated. Very underrated. When you think of guys that have come through here before in the past that maybe didn’t get a whole lot of notoriety, and then when they were finally here…wait a minute, why didn’t we know about this guy? He’s one of those guys that is much better than I think the people that rank him and scout him say he is.

"He has blazing speed with the basketball. I don’t know if we’ve had anybody faster than him with the basketball. He’s an absolute jet, but when he’s coming at you he’s seeing the entire floor. You’ll find that when he’s playing with guys on the floor, all of a sudden they are moving all over the place because they know they are going to get the basketball. They are running maybe harder than they would when someone else has the ball because they know they are going to get the basketball. He puts so much pressure on the defense because he’s so fast with the ball. If you don’t stop the ball he’ll get to the basket. He’s so athletic he’ll just take off and dunk the ball over the top of people even though he’s 6-2, 6-3."

"If you step up at all, that ball is passed," Romar added.  "Some guys make the pass, but they don’t make it at the right time. He delivers the ball at just the right time. He has very quick feet so he’s able to move defensively and apply pressure to the ball like we like. He has good genes, his dad played, Bernardo played for the Green Bay Packers and the Ravens, played in the NFL. He’s going to be fun to watch. With us playing up-tempo, he fits in just right because of his ability to push the ball and find people.”

Earlier this month Washington fired Romar, and that changed the situation for Harris

"I received my release from Washington on Tuesday," said Harris.  "It was a full release... they said because I just signed and they fired him then I can go to any school."

One of the first schools to reach out to Harris was NC State.  Wolfpack head coach Kevin Keatts checked in with him Tuesday night, which led to an unofficial visit on Wednesday.

"Coach Keatts talked a lot about with my family and then I went over to State for a visit," said Harris.  ""The visit was nice.  It was cool seeing coach Keatts with the Red on because last time I saw him he was wearing UNC Wilmington stuff.  I'd already been to State before for visits so I didn't really look around all the facilities again, it was more about spending time with coach Keatts.

Harris received big news from Keatts while on campus.  

"Coach Keatts offered me a scholarship," he said.  "He said that I'd have a good chance to come in and fight for playing time.  He likes to play a lot of guards so he thinks I can come in and play a big position for them.

"It was big to get that offer.  When I committed to Washington, I had some ACC offers... Wake Forest had offered but I didn't have one from Duke, Carolina, or State.  I know it would be cool that if I decided to go to State that people around here could come to my games and my family could watch me play."

Harris added that he also has spoken with NC State 2017 signee Thomas Allen.  The two haven't played together but Harris very familiar with Allen, who is originally from Garner.

"I've talked to Thomas Allen about NC State," said Harris.  "We're cool.  We've played against each other but not together.  I think we could play together well. I'm more of a pass-first point guard who can set guys up, and Thomas can score at will.  He's a great shot-maker, and he's sneaky athletic."

Originally from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Harris stated that both his parents attended North Carolina, and his father, Bernardo Harris, starred at linebacker for the Tar Heels before spending several seasons in the NFL with the Green Bay Packers and Baltimore Ravens.  

How would he describe his game?

"I can score the ball and get my teammates involved," said Harris. "I play defense, and I think I'm a coach on the floor.  "I'm looking for a school that can give me the keys to start the car," said Harris. " I want a chance to play as a freshman and I want to go to a school where I can help them win games.  Of course State is one of my looks because they won two national championships."

Schools continue to reach out to Harris, who is emerging as a priority for several programs now that he's available.  He added other programs have already extended scholarship offers, and he doesn't have a leader at this current time.  However, a decision could be coming soon.

"I haven't set up any other visits yet," he said.  "I do know that I'm looking for a school that can give me the keys to start the car.  I want a chance to play as a freshman and I want to go to a school where I can help them win games.  Of course State is one of my main looks because they won two national championships.

"I can't say exactly how long it will be before I make a decision... probably a couple of weeks.  This time I'm probably staying more local... I'm not going to go to the west coast for sure."

Harris spent his senior year at Raleigh (NC) Word of God where he averaged 25.1 points and 9.7 assists for the Holy Rams. 

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