If you haven't heard much about Texas A&M cornerback commit Dustin Harris, it's probably because the high school quarterback hadn't really thought of himself as a full-time cornerback until attending a three-day camp at Texas A&M last week.
"He didn't play a whole lot at defensive back for us," said Livingston head football coach Randy Rowe. "We put him in at situations when we had a lead or needed a stop to get the ball back but they're taking him on athleticism."
But that athleticism almost benefited another school, most likely Utah or Rice, which both offered Harris a scholarship to play receiver.
Harris went into the A&M camp hoping to get a similar offer from Texas A&M offensive coordinator Nolan Cromwell, who also coaches the wide receivers. But instead, he turned the head of defensive backs coach Charles McMillian on the final day of camp—a day that Harris almost wasn't even around for.
"I wasn't going to go to the three day camp but Coach Rowe convinced me I would get more looks than just going to the one day camp and it worked out great," Harris said in an exclusive interview with Aggie Websider. "The first two days were okay. I started off at receiver, which was the only position I went to try to get Coach Cromwell to notice me. Then on the last day Coach McMillian wanted to see me at DB and I went over there for about 35 minutes and after that 35 minutes was up I knew that I had impressed him and the defensive coordinator (Joe Kines), which was so exciting because when my parents showed, up the coaches went right over and showed interest right away."
Harris, who hopes to be a high school football coach when his playing days are over, said it was a dream come true to play for such a great school that's so close to his hometown. But he probably wouldn't have thought that as a kid.
"I was mostly a Texas fan growing up to tell you the truth," he said with a laugh. "I was born in Hart, Texas and my mom was a longhorn but with A&M colors. I grew up watching Longhorn football and Vince Young, but two years after they won that Rose Bowl game I kind of moved towards A&M as I started to see what else was out there."
Harris brings incredible athletic ability to a secondary unit that can definitely use it. He ran a 10.88 100-meter at the district track meet this spring, and was a unanimous first-team all-district guard for the Livingston basketball team after guiding his football squad to a school record 10-3 mark last fall at quarterback.
"Not many kids can excel at such a high level in all four major sports at the 4A level and he does that," Rowe said. "Plus, he's a great young man and a natural leader. He's one of the most competitive kids that I've ever been associated with and he's a winner. You can't teach that."
Harris said winning is the only thing that he's worried about, which is why moving to defensive back is not a concern.
"When I get on the field, nothing's on my mind except to win a football game, and not settling for anything else," he said.
Harris added that his commitment is as solid as they come.
"My head coach and my dad both told me that if I commit somewhere I'm going to keep my word," Harris said. "That's the same thing I expect from colleges. If they tell me they're going to do something I expect them to do that. I'm not taking any other visits. I'm committed to A&M."
Harris commits after impressive camp
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