One recruiting philosophy that NC State has stayed true to since the arrival of head coach Chuck Amato is that you can never have too many big bodies that can run. Enter one of Florida's top prospects who just happens to fall into that very category.
DE/TE Courtney Harris, 6-4, 230 pounds with 4.7-second speed in the 40-yard dash of Jupiter (Fla) High School became a full-time starter just last year and made the most of it once he got there. He finished off the year with 78 tackles and six sacks and now finds himself as one of the most highly rated prospects in the Sunshine State.
The Insiders.com has rated Harris a three-star prospect while SuperPrep named him an all-american and the No. 50 DL in the nation earlier this summer. The Orlando Sentinel recently listed Harris as the No. 46 player in the state of Florida.
Florida recruiting analyst Mike Bakas was even more impressed with Harris, naming him the No. 18 player in the state while writing, "We need to figure out a way to get him blocked," were the first words uttered by an opposing coach when asked about Harris. He has the right physical build and has a big motor to match it. His quick first step allows him to win most one-on-one matchups outside. He finished last season, his first as a starter, with over 70 tackles and six sacks. He's since added about 15 pounds of muscle and is ready to go again this fall. Harris also competes in basketball."
On the recruiting front, Harris has gained scholarship offers from Miami, Florida, NC State and LSU to name a few. Pack DL coach Todd Stroud is heading up Harris' recruiting and has made a nice, early impression. His work has landed the Pack among the senior athlete's list of top schools.
"Right now I'm looking at Miami, Florida, NC State, Georgia, LSU and Ohio State," said Harris. Those are also the main ones recruiting me."
Although Miami will likely pose the stiffest test, Harris said he's been impressed with what he's seen of NC State and his interactions with coach Stroud.
"NC State's got a nice thing going up there and a very good program," he said. "I like that schedule they're playing a lot.
"Coach Stroud, he's the kind of dude that tells you the truth. He's not playing around and he just tells you the facts. That's what I like about him. I don't know a lot about their defense right now but regardless, where ever I go, I'm going to come in and play hard. Whatever they need of me, that's what I would be willing to do."
Harris has not set up any official visits as of yet and will most likely wait until much later in the year before deciding on a final school.