DALLAS (FWAA) – Oklahoma's Nic Harris has been nominated for the FedEx Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award, to be announced at the end of the 2007 season. Harris, a junior free safety, grew up with an unstable home life, but has taken a leadership and mentoring role with area schoolchildren.
Born to young parents who were unable to care for him, Harris shuttled from house to house throughout his childhood in Alexandria, La. "I didn't have a bed to really call my own for a good part of my life," Harris told The Oklahoman of Oklahoma City.
But Harris didn't survive. He thrived. Now, he is president of Bridge Builders, a minority community service organization that participates in several projects in the Norman/Oklahoma City area. He has worked with Toys for Tots as well as other programs, but enjoys mentoring kids the most.
An idle mind is the worst thing a child can have," Harris said. "I feel as easy as the Lord gave it to you, He'll take it way. You should always give back to the community. I'm not personally able to give back to the community of Alexandria, La., but I'm just going to try to make an impact in the area I'm in."
Harris is on track to earn a degree in physical therapy. He has started every game at free safety for the Sooners. He ranks second on the team with 51 tackles and two interceptions.
For the second straight year, the Football Writers Association of America and the FedEx Orange Bowl will announce a weekly nominee each Wednesday during the season. A blue-ribbon panel will determine the winner from all of the nominees. The winner of the FedEx Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award will be announced in December and be presented with the trophy.