Checking in with Tyler Harris

Checking in with Tyler Harris

TSR contributor Jeff Borzello caught up with hoops prospect Tyler Harris recently.

HAMPTON, Va. - The Harris family let down Maryland fans back in November when five-star forward Tobias Harris chose Tennessee over the Terrapins.

However, there is a chance they will make up for it with reclassified 2012 prospect Tyler Harris, Tobias' younger brother.

According to their father, Torrel Harris, there is a mutual interest between the family and Maryland.

“We love Maryland,” Harris said at the Elite Youth Basketball League at the Boo Williams Sportsplex in Hampton, Va. on Saturday. “Out of the schools it came down to, if Tobias didn't pick Tennessee, he was going to go to Maryland. Tobias liked Maryland. The only issue was that he didn't want to be in a city.”

The same doesn't hold true for younger brother Tyler, who played with Tobias at Half Hollow Hills East High School (N.Y.) this past season. He runs with the Albany City Rocks on the AAU circuit.

Harris currently holds offers from Connecticut, Duquesne, Seton Hall, Wisconsin and Tennessee, with interest from Georgia Tech, St. John's, Rutgers, George Mason and Maryland. His father added that many schools are looking at him for his potential and ability down the road.

“He loves Maryland,” Torrel said of Tyler. “There's the academics and he loves coach [Gary] Williams. The thing is, he was with Tobias on the official visit, so he had a chance to see everything. He liked the campus, and all the assistant coaches are down to Earth.”

The father said that he is most impressed with coach Williams.

“I like coach Williams because he didn't come with any BS,” Torrel Harris said. “Everybody else puts up a fake façade, but not him. It's like, 'A lot of people don't like me, but this is who I am,' and you've got to respect that.”

Torrel also mentioned that he feels comfortable discussing things with Williams, and he knows that the coach will be completely honest with him.

“Coach is pretty cool, I like him,” Torrel said. “And he's a helluva coach. He's got no All-Americans and he almost, he lost [on a buzzer shot] to a team that made the Final Four.”

Tyler Harris is a completely different player than his older brother. Whereas Tobias lost a ton of weight to reach his true potential, Harris is going to need to add strength and weight in order to make an impact at the next level.

His father said that the main difference between the two is their eating habits.

“Tobias ate well, and he was always doing his push-ups and sit-ups,” said Torrel, who is not afraid to admit that his son needs to improve his build and get stronger. “You know what Tyler eats for dinner? Cookies and milk. So he needs to eat better and get nutrition in him.”

Right now, Harris is a 6-foot-8 swingman who can shoot the lights out from three-point range. However, he is expected to continue growing - he presently has size 17.5 shoes - with a peak height of 6-foot-11 or 7-feet. With his perimeter game getting better and better, Harris could potentially be a match-up nightmare for opponents because of his size and shooting ability.

“He should pick up where Tobias left off,” Torrel said.

That could be a good thing for Maryland fans, in more ways than one.

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