Harris is Texas' OTHER Quarterback

Nearly all of the pre-season hype at Texas has been focused on the quarterback duel between RS-freshman Colt McCoy and true freshman Jevan Snead. Entering the fray in a couple of weeks is freshman Sherrod Harris, who may be the only dual-threat QB on campus.

The Arlington Bowie product will also be one of the smartest. Harris graduated this month with a 3.96 and turned down an academic scholarship to Stanford when he gave Texas his verbal last June. But the highly-competitive Harris still grimaces about the 'B' he received in one English class. One lousy B.

"Analytical poetry is not my favorite thing," he laughed. "That 'B' cost me my 4.0. Nobody remembers you if you graduate with a 3.96."

Not necessarily. The affable Harris left his personal mark on the team that struggled to a 1-9 mark during his final season in which he missed five games due to a hernia. He threw for 1,883 yards and 11 TDs during his final season while adding 413 yards and six TDs on the ground. Now, here's the part that makes your eyes water: Harris tore the meniscus in his right knee during August two-a-days and managed to keep it a secret from his coaches. He finally had surgery last January but told Inside Texas that he played with "terrible" pain.

"I don't remember walking too many Saturdays last season," he added. "I hopped around a lot. I tried to play basketball, like a dummy."

A "dummy" with a 3.96 GPA, of course. But he would finish his prep career passing for a school record 4,321 yards (No. 3 all-time in Arlington ISD history) during his three years as a starter. The Texas 5A third-team all-state pick believes he is in tip-top shape and, with just two other scholarship QBs on campus, understands that he'll be in the thick of things once the season kicks off on September 2.

"They told me I have a chance to redshirt but they also told me I have a chance to start, too," Harris said. "If I work hard and if I'm able to play, I will. If not, they'll keep me on the sideline."

Harris told Inside Texas that his greatest asset is his "will to win". He possesses a light-hearted confidence and actively recruited Snead to change his commitment from Florida last fall. Harris was on hand at the Spring Game to cheer on both QBs.

"I think they both did really well and the competition looks really close. I think they both did a great job under pressure. They did a good job of getting rid of the ball and in managing the game."

Harris keeps in touch with Longhorn DBs Brandon Foster and Ryan Palmer, former teammates at Arlington Bowie. But he talks to WR Billy Pittman "all the time. Billy has told me not to be conceited but don't take anything from anybody. At Texas, everybody is a superstar."

The 6-3, 212-pound Harris grew up a Florida State fan simply because the Seminoles were college football's most dominant team during his formative years. That's why he models his game after Florida State QB Charlie Ward ("Charlie Ward was fundamentally sound and intelligent"). It's also a feather in his cap that Mack Brown is an FSU alum. Yet, the Texas coach that sold him on the Longhorn program was TE coach Bruce Chambers.

"Coach Chambers may be one of the biggest reasons why I picked Texas. He's from around here and he knew my background. The way he came after me excited me and got me excited about Texas."

Offensive Coordinator Greg Davis has sent Harris an "installment tape" containing "most of the plays. I want to come in understanding all the plays that we have to do. I mainly need to learn the language that we'll use for the linemen and for the blocking schemes."

As long as it's not in the language of analytical poetry, Harris should be fine.

Harris arrives in Austin on May 30 for summer school and voluntary summer workouts. He plans to major in international business with a concentration on marketing and advertising.

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