Harris gets offer, pulls the trigger

The South Carolina Gamecocks picked up their third commitment of the 2011 class today when Ridgeland HS (Rossville, Ga.) DE Mason Harris pulled the trigger after picking up an offer at the Gamecocks one-day camp.

"I'm just excited," Harris said after committing to Carolina, "because I only had two offers from just two small schools, and then I get this big offer like this. And that's a school I've always liked. So, I'm real excited. And it's in the SEC."

Harris' other major offer was from Middle Tennessee State.

Harris says South Carolina had been sending him letters since football season. He then began talking to his recruiter of record G.A. Mangus, who came by his school in the spring, and gave him an invite to camp.

The Gamecocks wanted to see more out of the 6-4, 205-pounder, but all it took was a half-day with defensive line coach Brad Lawing for the them to make up their minds.

Lawing offered Harris immediately and after a tour around the campus with Mangus, Harris committed to Carolina.

"They just said don't take too long," Harris said. "So I just went to them -- and I was like I've always talked about (going to South Carolina) -- so I was like I'm going to commit here. They seemed pretty happy about it."

Harris says that Mangus and Lawing played a big part in him choosing the Gamecocks.

"When I first met (Mangus}, he was real nice, real cool," Harris said. "Unlike some recruiters, he was real open and everything. He told me we can give him a call whenever we need to. Him being real nice, and Coach Lawing being real nice, it helped a lot."

Harris also enjoyed his tour around the South Carolina campus that he took with several other prospects who were taking part in the one-day camp.

"The facilities -- I've wanted to go somewhere with nice facilities -- and they have real nice facilities like the student center. Their coaches were real nice and friendly. And it's not too far from home. It made it a good fit."

Harris says that he has always been interested in the Gamecocks, making it a no-brainer to commit so early. He says a number of things grabed his attention early on.

"First of all, their head coach, Steve Spurrier," he said. "And then I've always thought they had a good defense. Even if they weren't so good [of a team] during the season, they've always had a pretty decent defense. That kind of made me (interested) in them."

Harris reminds some of a former Gamecock defender also from the Peach State, who was a big part of many of those Gamecock defenses: Acworth, Ga.-native Eric Norwood.

"That's what kind of role I think that they want me to play. Like I can stand up and I can put my hand down like he did.

"I did DE today, but I think I'll drop back and [also] rush some when I get in the program."

While many prospects choose to send a message to the Gamecock Nation in this space, Harris says he likes to let his play do the talking.

"I'm really not the talkative type," he said.

Harris is the Gamecocks third commitment of the 2011 class and joins Clarke Central (Athens, Ga.) ATH Martay Mattox and Marvin Ridge HS (Waxhaw, N.C.) WR K.J. Brent on the commitment list.

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