| 6 years ago||
Yesterday Corsicana (TX) Navarro Junior College TE Chase Harper had no idea if the Hurricanes would even recruit him.
Today he's a Miami commitment.
"I committed this morning," Harper said. "I just got the offer this morning. I called coach (Jeff) Stoutland, he put coach (Al) Golden on. Coach Golden was the one who actually offered me. He asked me do I want to be a Hurricane. I was like `Yes, sir.' He said `We're giving you the opportunity.' I said `I'm going to take it.'"
Harper will be a redshirt junior next season, and he arrives in January.
"When I committed I was excited," Harper said. "I told my mom - she was here this morning when I did it, called the coaches. She was happy."
He committed to UM sight unseen - he's never visited the campus.
"Last year that's where I wanted to go, passed up the opportunity," Harper said. "This year I wasn't going to let it pass again.
"I never visited the campus - it's the tradition. I liked Miami since I was young, since watching their highlights. That was the place for me."
He added that "It's a done deal."
The tight end gave his pledge to the Cornhuskers over a year ago, giving him plenty of time to think things over.
A two-star prospect coming out of Phlugerville (TX) Conley High School, Harper was originally an Iowa State commitment.
"I played wide receiver in high school," he said.
He quickly emerged as a four-star JUCO recruit. He's been utilized as a blocker for run-heavy national champion Navarro. As a redshirt freshman he had seven catches for 150 yards and two touchdowns, and this past season he had 10 receptions with six of them for scores.
"He didn't get the ball as much in his hands as he probably could have," co-offensive coordinator Cody Crill told CaneSport.com. "We used him for blocking mainly. But he's a big kid, 6-6, 250, and he can really run, is a 4.5, 4.6 guy.
"We just won a national championship, and we're a real tight end oriented (run) offense. We motion him around a whole bunch, have him flexed off the ball a whole lot, use him blocking. He's a really good athlete - we're able to spread him out and he can run down the field and catch the football. He's a tremendous athlete, played on our basketball team that went to the (NJCAA) Final 4. He's really never been through a spring football because of that - he's a tremendous athlete."
Harper said he will consider playing both sports at UM, but that he hasn't talked to hoops coach Frank Haith yet.
Harper's goals as a Cane?
"The offense at Navarro was a running offense, so I had to learn how to block," he said. "I expect to play right away (at Miami). I know they need tight ends. I want to go there and win. I've been a winner my whole life; I want to continue to win."
Harper landed other offers from Kansas State (where he visited last weekend), Michigan State and Texas A&M.
He says he may not see UM's campus before actually enrolling next month.
A day ago Harper had no idea his future was in Coral Gables.
What a difference a day makes.
"Last night they watched my video, and this morning they said I was the guy," Harper said. "It was so unexpected."