Niamey Harris had a look of exhaustion on his face as he sat in the chair. He had just finished playing in the Cali Hoops All Star game at St. Ignatius. His team lost in the game, but he was happy with his play in the game and his play his senior year in high school.
St. Ignatius, was also the scene of one his greatest prep games this season, when Mission High defeated St. Ignatius in the Division III NorCal semifinals. The game was capped off with Harris jumping from outside of the key and throwing down a massive dunk off of a missed free throw attempt.
The next game, the 6-foot-2 senior guard would cap off his historic season, leading Mission to the California Division III state championship, as they defeated Southern California’s Villa Park High School, 82-75 in overtime. Harris finished that game with 31 points, 7 rebounds, four assists and four steals. He clearly outplayed the Villa Park guards and its main player, Myles Franklin, a 6-foot-4 senior guard, who is going to Northeastern University in Boston on a basketball scholarship.
Harris, the San Francisco player of the year three years in row was also city player of the year in football. But his days on the gridiron are over. He said he is going to commit his energies to basketball full-time.
“I love football, but I am done playing,” said Harris. “I am focusing all my energies into basketball.”
His football playing had some basketball schools being standoffish when it came to recruiting him. But now his options are opening up. Sacramento State and the University of San Francisco have offered him basketball scholarships and they are awaiting the results of his SAT scores. Harris has also started garnering interest from others schools such as UC Santa Barbara, St. Mary’s, Morgan State and Cal Poly SLO.
He said that location doesn’t matter regarding his college commitment. He just wants to play at a school that values him as a player and that plays fast offensively. A strong, physical and athletic combo guard, Harris is a rugged defender who is great on the defensive end. Offensively, he is good at finishing around the basket. His jumper is solid, but it can be fine tuned.
Harris is reassessing his situation and he is going to get back on the basketball circuit, suiting up with the Oakland Soldiers senior team in the April viewing period.“Yeah, I am going to get back on the scene with them and see if I can get a few more looks,” said Harris.
“I am now going to focus all my energies towards basketball.”