New Jersey defensive end Terrence Harris said a week ago that he was getting close to a decision and had the Iowa Hawkeyes out in front, but still had yet to visit the campus in Iowa City. In the end, it didn't matter as the 6-foot-2, 240-pound Harris gave his verbal commitment today to Iowa coaching staff anyway.
"I committed to Iowa," said Harris. "It's the perfect fit for me. I really like their coaching staff and feel like it will be the right place for me to perform at my best in college."
As a junior at Paramus Catholic High School, Harris finished with 78 tackles, 18 TFL, and 7.5 sacks during the 2012 season. His film drew scholarship offers from Iowa, Florida Atlantic, Western Michigan, and UMASS, and interest from several others including NC State, Tennessee, Rutgers, and Temple.
The key figure in Iowa's recruiting efforts was new assistant coach Chris White, who developed a strong relationship with the New Jersey native that made him feel at home even at a place that he has not visited yet.
"He's a great guy," Harris said of White previously. "You can tell he really cares. Family is a big part of his life and it's a big part of mine too, so the level of respect that we have for each other is great."
Harris is the second recruit that White has landed from the state of New Jersey, joining Somerset Franklin linebacker Jameer Outsey on Iowa's commitment list. Like Harris, who plans to make a trip to Iowa City in early October, Outsey made his decision before visiting campus as well.
Overall, Harris' verbal pledge today gives the Hawkeyes 11 commitments in the Class of 2014.