Harris to show versatility in 2009

Naaman Forest receiver John Harris has enjoyed two productive seasons at receiver for the Rangers, but will show all of his versatility in 2009. The 6-3, 200-pound receiver will move to quarterback as a senior in hopes of continuing the Rangers recent playoff run. Burnt Orange Beat spoke with Harris about the move and his upcoming senior season.

Garland Naaman Forest will be under a new head coach in 2009 with Mark Elam returning to the sidelines after a few years in administration in Rockwall I.S.D. One of the first moves Coach Elam made at the 10-5A school was to move receiver John Harris to a position to have the ball in his hands every snap.

The two-time first team all-district pick with 90 career catches for 1,431 yards and 16 touchdowns will begin spring workouts in a few days under center for the first time.

"My goal is to help my team out as much as possible," Harris said. "I'm going to be making the position switch and will have to adjust. I would rather play receiver, but again, my goal is to help the team wherever I can. My goal is to make the playoffs again and go farther next year. We got a running back transfer in and just have to work hard to produce the yards and points Jonathan Miller put up last year."

As far as staying sharp as receiver in preparation for the next level as a Texas Longhorn, the 6-3, 200-pound sturdily built prospect will likely split time in 7-on-7.

"I might play receiver in 7-on-7 and let someone else play quarterback. I'll probably play both. I'll still work on route running," Harris said.

Harris, who entertained offers from Oklahoma, Arkansas, Texas Tech and Arizona before committing to Texas, says he stays in constant contact with Texas receivers coach Bobby Kennedy.

"We talk a lot. We just talk about life, my grades and what I've been up to. We've only talked about the receiver position once or twice," Harris said.

On the recruiting front, the Kansas Jayhawks offered post commitment to Texas, but most schools have backed off with the exception of the Oklahoma Sooners and Texas Tech Red Raiders.

"I still have JMills (Jonathan Miller) and T (Terrence Bullitt) on my back all of the time. JMills wants me to go to OU, but I've got Adrian Phillips and Tevin (Jackson) keeping me level headed. I'm a solid commit to Texas. I'll have two teammates at Texas that I know and played against. I had an offer from the Kansas Jayhawks after I committed, but most of the other schools have backed off," Harris said.

Currently, the long armed receiver is focused on qualifying for the state track meet in the high jump and 4x200 relay.

"I'm competing in the high jump and the 4x200 relay at regionals. I qualified for regionals in the high jump at 6'4", but I can go 6'6". We qualified in the 4x200 relay with a 1:29, but our best time is a 1:28 this year. My 200 split is around 20.5," Harris said.

John Harris File

Whitehouse 5-43, one rush for 23 yards
Lewisville 1-3, one rush for 11 yards
Mesquite 2-13, one rush for three yards
Plano West 5-91 and two TD's (19, 32), two carries for 18 yards
Lakeview Centennial 3-57 and one TD (24), one rush for eight yards
Sachse 4-88 and a TD (40)
Rowlett 4-38
North Garland 8-119 and one TD (22), two rushes for nine yards and a 38 yard TD pass
Garland 3-42 and a TD (12)
South Garland 2-16
Carrolton Creekview 1-9 (TD)
Copperas Cove 7-65

2008 Totals - 45-584 and seven TD's, 8 rushes for 72 yards
Career Totals - 90 career catches for 1,431 yards and 16 TD's


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