Rutgers WR, Big Ten leader in stolen bases, hopeful to make impact in 2016
Jawuan Harris, a freshman wide receiver for Rutgers last season, couldn’t make an impact on the football field. He got hurt midway through training camp and never played a down in 2015.
Where he did make his impact, however, was on the baseball diamond. And in particular, stealing bases. Harris led the Big Ten as a freshman in stolen bases with 37 and ranked No. 5 nationally.
When asked about whether or not his speed can translate to success on the football field, Harris was hopeful according to Keith Sargeant of nj.com.
“It definitely does,” Harris said in the article. “I feel like (speed) is my best attribute right now, and I want to be able to build on some things to help my speed actually translate some more.”
In the Scarlet Knights’ intrasquad scrimmage on Aug. 13, his speed apparently helped, as Harris caught a 71-yard touchdown pass.
“He has the ability to (play) both (outside and in the slot),” Rutgers wide receiver Jafar Williams said of the 5-foot-9 Harris via nj.com. “People (ask), ‘Do you want a guy who is 6-foot-6?’ I don’t care. There are a lot of guys who get drafted and have production. Steve Smith is an outside receiver and he had a hell of a career. It’s just a matter of can you execute your assignment.
“(Harris) gives us the ability to be in the slot like Janarion (Grant). Right now we are going to figure out the best 4-to-5 guys to put on the field and not have a good player sitting behind another good player. If (Harris) is the best or the second-best or the third-best guy, he is going to be out there on the field with Janarion as a starter and not necessarily behind him.”
According to Sargeant, Harris said he added 10 pounds of muscle since the baseball season ended to get into football shape. And when asked about training for baseball, since he was so successful at the sport a year ago, Harris said he isn’t worried about it, and is concentrating on football.
Harris talked about last year as a whole and if the transition from baseball back to football will be difficult.
“I made the All-Big Ten freshman (baseball) team so I thought that was pretty cool,” Harris said via nj.com. “But I want to improve on a lot things for baseball season. And I definitely want to come out and be an impact football player and help this team win games.
“It’s been kind of easy since I was already studying the (football) plays during baseball season, so I was able to adjust to the playbook fairly quickly.”
Harris will have the ability to show off his speed and football talents this season when Rutgers kicks off its 2016 campaign against Washington at 2 p.m. on Sept. 3 on the road.