Wednesday, 09 October 2019 19:06

Harrington verbally commits to Campbell; says 'my dream is a reality'

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Senior D'Marcus Harrington has verbally committed to play football at Campbell University. Senior D'Marcus Harrington has verbally committed to play football at Campbell University. Kyle Pillar — The Richmond Observer.

ROCKINGHAM — A breakout junior season last fall on the gridiron led to not one or two, but five, Division I football scholarship offers for Richmond Senior High School’s D’Marcus Harrington.

And on Monday evening, the 6-0, 180-pound cornerback became the first RSHS student-athlete of the 2019-2020 school year to verbally commit to further his educational and football playing career.

Harrington took to Twitter and posted a photo that said “Welcome to the Creek,” and wrote “First off I want to thank God. I would also like to thank my family, friends and coaches for sticking by me during this process. With that being said… I am proud to announce I will be committing to Campbell University. #RollHumps.”

The current senior Raider, one of four returning defensive backs on this year’s team, had a plethora of universities to choose from. Over the spring and summer, Harrington received offers from Austin Peay State University, Campbell, Elon University, Liberty University and North Carolina A&T University.

After much consideration with his family, and guidance from the Raiders’ coaching staff, Harrington ultimately decided that becoming a Fighting Campbell was the best fit for him.

“It’s a blessing because a lot of players don’t get the opportunity to play college football and get a full-ride scholarship,” Harrington explained. “Getting offers from five schools showed me that I can compete at any level and really boosted my confidence.

“I chose Campbell because it was the best fit on and off the field,” he continued. “The football program is really good and it’s a great place to be seen if I want to get to the next level.”

Another aspect of the school, located in Buies Creek, N.C., Harrington liked was its “family atmosphere” and the fact it’s just a short hour and 45 minute drive from home. He also plans to major in journalism and noted the school’s journalism department fit his liking.

Campbell, which competes in the NCAA’s Football Championship Subdivision (FCS), and is a member of the Big South Conference, is offering Harrington a full-ride scholarship. He first visited campus in June and was shown around by assistant defensive backs coach DeAndre Thompson.

“When I visited the school, all the coaches kept it real and didn’t sugarcoat how it was going to be,” he explained. “They showed me how it really was, and I like that about (the program).”

Although his announcement went public earlier this week, Harrington has been sitting on the big news for about a month. He explained that Monday’s Tweet was a result of “feeling it was the right time” to let his teammates and coaches know and that he was “100 percent committed” to the Fighting Camels and head coach Mike Minter.

During his junior campaign with the Raiders in 2018, Harrington was a starting cornerback who helped Richmond record four shutouts and win its first conference championship in eight years. He ended the season with a team-high nine passes defended and 32 total tackles (27 solo tackles) in 11 games. He also returned two kickoffs for 28 yards.

Through six games this fall, with Richmond riding a perfect record, Harrington already has 18 total tackles (eight solo) and two passes defended.

“The significance for him is that he’s comfortable enough to make this decision,” head coach Bryan Till said. “D’Marcus had five options on the table, and he might get a few more, but he made a smart decision that’s close to home with a program that he’ll be comfortable with defensively.

“It’s incredible the amount of distance he’s come in past two years,” he added. “He’s switched from safety to corner, and he’s so much better with his footwork and speed, and he’s a lot more physical. He had the natural talent, but now he’s made himself a college football player.”

Harrington’s growth the past two seasons on the varsity team come from five years of growth since starting to play football in eighth grade. Soon after he discovered he “could be really good,” Harrington made it his top priority to make it to the collegiate level.

“It didn’t feel real until I decided,” he said. “I tried to keep picturing myself there and that it was the right school for me. I’m very excited — it’s been my dream since I started playing football in eighth grade, and now  my dream is a reality.

“I get to show people that you can really do anything you put your mind to,” he added. “I started playing later, worked hard and kept at it and now I’m going to the next level.”

The excitement of cementing the next four years of his life hasn’t yet left Harrington’s mind, but he knows he has bigger, more imminent goals at hand with the Raiders. As Richmond continues its march toward a perfect season and its second Sandhills Athletic Conference title in two years, Harrington’s role in the secondary will play a large part in the team’s success.

He said he’s going to do whatever he can to help the Raiders win a state championship, which would be the team’s first one since 2008. Harrington added that all of his focus is on his team and its success during the home stretch of the season.

“There is no better place to play high school football than Richmond,” he said. “We have a big team, a big crowd, and those things will help me in big moments in college. I want to be ready to start when I get to Campbell. 

“I want to thank all of my coaches, friends, teammates and the community for standing behind me,” he closed. “They all showed me how positive actions outweigh the negative ones, and that helped me with my decision.”

Last modified on Wednesday, 09 October 2019 19:09

Kyle Pillar

Sports Editor. IUP communications media and journalism alumni. English teacher, Ninth Grade Academy.

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