FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – For Da'John Harris, Saturday was a big day on a number of different fronts.
First of all, he caught the red eye from Los Angeles to Atlanta and eventually arrived in Fort Lauderdale for the check in at Offense-Defense All-American Bowl. Then he got to meet a good group of new friends throughout the day at the Fort Lauderdale Marriott North.
And, oh yeah, he eliminated one team from his final group and is now talking about making a decision live during the game on Thursday. Kickoff for the game is at 7 p.m. EST and it will be broadcast on ESPNU.
"I might commit here," Harris, the nation's No. 3 defensive tackle, said late Saturday night. "I might just go ahead think about it real hard and get it out of the way."
The list of teams he's thinking about has been reduced to three teams, he says.
"It's SC, Michigan and Oregon," he said.
"It was four, but it just went to three when I heard that John Blake moved to North Carolina. So Nebraska's off my list just for that. He was a big deciding factor since he was recruiting me, and he was a good coach. He was somebody that I really wanted to play for. I hadn't committed to Nebraska, but he was a big part of why I was thinking about them really hard."
All three of the schools on Harris' final list have a lot of positives to sell.
"SC has everything," Harris, who is 6-foot-4 and 266 pounds, said.
"They don't have a lot of depth in their d-line. They've got that opportunity. To have that opportunity at a great school is a great thing. When I was up there at Michigan, it was cool. They'd give me a chance to compete also. Oregon already has a lot of good guys committed. They have a good recruiting class coming in. I think they've got like five guys here in the game committed to them. I'm sure they're going to talk to me some this week."
Harris was excited to meet some new people on Saturday, especially the West coaching staff led by Lufkin, Texas, coach John Outlaw.
"I like the coaches," Harris said. "Coach Outlaw is great. He gets to the point, basically. He has a desire to win, just like I do. He wants us to come out here to play to win. I didn't come all the way from LA not to win. There are already some guys I knew and some I haven't met until today, but in general the players period are pretty good group of guys. Even the new guys I just met have been pretty easy to get along with."
Harris said he plans on taking every aspect around the game seriously.
"My thing is you're never too good to learn something new," he said.
"Being a high school player, I haven't even seen what the two highest level of football are like yet. This will be a great boost to learn some things new to help me out.
"This is the real deal. I'm playing against everybody that's ranked as high as me. I'm a competitor, though. I'm going to compete."