Harris hunkers down with hairy dawgs

Former Glenwood and current Central High defensive back A.J. Harris committed to play football for the Georgia Bulldogs last week. The senior is one of 37 5-Star athletes in the country. During his junior season, Harris allowed opponents to catch only one pass. He also excelled as a kick return specialist and wide receiver.


No matter which recruiting service poll you choose to believe, the name AJ Harris is on the list of 5-Star players. He is one of the nation’s top backs, but is versatile enough to play several positions which makes him even more valuable to teams on the college level.

Harris, a former Glenwood star who transferred to Central High during the offseason, has decided to take is versatility and athleticism to the place he has been predicted to go over the last two years – the University of Georgia. Harris announced his decision to become a Bulldog last week via social media.

His commitment gives the defending National Champion Bulldogs their first 5-Star athlete for the 2023 class. With Harris adding his name to the 10 other commits Georgia has received for 2023, the Bulldogs’ recruiting class should move from No. 10 to No. 5 in the nation.

Harris had over 30 offers from colleges around the nation, but selected Georgia over Alabama, Clemson and Florida. He was recruited to Kirby Smart’s Georgia Bulldogs primarily by former Carver High of Columbus coach Dell McGee and Fran Brown.

The senior-to-be is ranked as the No. 25 player in the nation by 247Sports.com and the No. 5 player at his position. He is ranked as the No. 5 player in Alabama.

The 6-1, 180-pound Harris’ scouting report says:

“Ideal size for his position at 6-foot-1 and 180-pounds. Possesses an explosive lower half and ability to add additional weight to his frame. Displays good athletic ability in all three phases of the game. Will see the majority of his snaps at the safety position but exhibits some ability as a man defender at the corner position.

“Quick twitch explosive player. Displays excellent short area quickness and change of direction ability. Shows the ability to transition in and out breaks quickly out of his back pedal. Possesses good play speed. Excels when playing downhill and in the short to intermediate part of the field. Aggressive run support defender. Flashes some key and diagnose ability with the ability to close space quickly. Violent at the point of attack. Will strike you.

“Although he possesses the physical traits to play the corner position, can see a natural progression to a nickel or deep safety role. Will need to continue to develop as a man to man defender in the deep part of the field but has a good feel for playing in coverage underneath.

Projects as a versatile secondary defender that can be deployed in a variety of ways. Best suited to play closer to the line of scrimmage where he can let his size and physicality take over. Will add immediate special teams contributions on multiple units at the next level. Has the ability to develop into an all-conference Power Five starter and should contribute sooner rather than later at the collegiate level.”

Harris made All-State on the ASWA’s AISA team last season. He made 31 tackles, had three pass break-ups, forced two fumbles and allowed only one catch. He also contributed on offense with 13 carries for 172 yards with five touchdowns and caught 13 passes for 307 yards with two touchdowns. He returned three punts and two kickoffs doe six points.