Dodge City Linebacker Nate Harris

In 2002, strong safety Nate Harris was a marquee recruit for the University of Miami. As a senior at Miami Edison HS, Harris made 129 tackles, had two interceptions, and recorded 21 sacks. Unfortunately for the Hurricanes, Harris' personal life prevented him from enrolling in 2002. His life is back on track, and the 6-2, 220-pound Harris is making a splash at Dodge City Community College in Kansas. chased down Harris for a brief interview recently. Here's what he had to say...

What are some of the physical attributes that help you on the football field?
My 4.48 forty time and my strength. I bench 365 and squat 455.

You were a highly recruited athlete coming out of high school in Florida. I know you ended up signing with Miami, but which other schools were you looking at?
Michigan State, LSU, Florida State, Florida, NC State, Rutgers, and Central Florida.

What led you to your current JC?
Ultimately, I didn't make the test score

What were some of the highlights from your freshman season?
It was the 4th quarter and we needed to get the ball back so our offense could put some points on the board. The other team threw a pass and I jumped as high as I could to get it and picked it off. There was like a minute left in the game ... that was a big-time play to me.

What were your stats last season?
I had 89 tackles, 6 sacks, 1 interception, and 4 fumble recoveries.

When will you have your AA degree?
In December.

Are any four-year schools recruiting you right now? If yes, which ones?
Yes, Kansas, Kansas State, Arizona, Florida, Mississippi State, LSU, Nebraska, South Florida, Florida State, Florida Atlantic, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, BYU, and Iowa.

Which schools seem to be recruiting you the hardest?
Kansas, Kansas State, Arizona, Mississippi State, FAU, and Florida.

What will be the most important factors, other than playing time obviously, that you'll consider when choosing a college?
My coaching staff, the school environment, and the facilities

What separates you from the other guys at your position that you've seen play?
That I have speed and a sense for the ball. And a heart of a lion out there.

How about some areas you're most focused on improving?
In my one-on-one drills, back pedaling.

What have you been doing in the off season to improve your skills?
I had a professional trainer when I went home in the summer. I worked out 6 times a week -- lift 3 and ran 3. So I'm in the best shape of my life right now.

Do you know what you'd like to study when you leave JC for a four-year college?
Sport Administration and Real Estate

How would your teammates describe you on and off of the football field?
Focused and always wanting to be the leader in everything I do.

When you're not playing football or in school, what are some of things you like to do?
Play with my kids, go to the movies, talk on the phone, play video games, and stay humble.

Tell us something that's maybe a little unique about yourself.
That I keep my faith in the Lord no matter what the situation is and I always prosper ... so I know this game is destiny for me.

Who are guys we should watch for on next year's Dodge City Team?
Wide receiver Stevin Williams is a legit 4.3 sprinter with a great work ethic, quick, with hands. He's coming off a redshirt year and should very exciting too watch.

Defensive end Steve Burch has unbelievably quick feet and hands for his size. He's 270 but can run. He's another leader on this team. He was a transfer from Iowa.

Wide receiver Jeron Harvey. I've seen him improve a lot since I've been here. He's a big target at around 6-5 ... something like a Roy Williams type receiver. I know he will get recruited heavily.

Free safety Brandon Jelks is the only guy on my defense that I can say he is like a mirror of me. I play strong safety and he plays the free. Every practice we meet the goals we set before practice. And if I don't get mine he tells me about myself. He was a medical redshirt last year with an ankle, but now he is ready. It's going to be hard for any receiver to go deep on us back there.

NOTE: Harris projects to outside linebacker at the next level. At this time, Miami is not in the picture for Harris' services. He was recently named a pre-season honorable mention NJCAA All-American.



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