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Sports Spotlight: From Washington County to Campbell, South Central’s Harris has grown toughness on and off the court

Omar Harris signed this week with division one Campbell men’s basketball
Sports Spotlight: From Washington County to Campbell, South Central’s Harris has grown toughness on and off the court
Published: May. 17, 2022 at 10:45 PM EDT
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WINTERVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - A local basketball star is heading to college hoops after going down a long winding road from Washington County to Winterville. We feature South Central senior Omar Harris in this week’s Pepsi Sports Spotlight.

“I started playing when I was 5 years old, I will never forget the day,” says South Central senior Omar Harris, “Picked up the ball, I got took to the rec center. From that day on it just grew on me.”

Omar Harris grew up in Washington County. Learning ball, learning strength.

“Growing up we played on concrete courts. You play on concrete courts you got that toughness from the jump,” says Harris.

Toughness he needed from an early age.

“My sisters husband ended up getting killed in a car accident. My cousin who was like a brother to me he ended up getting killed. It was a rough, rough time in my life,” says Harris.

The constant which remained was basketball. The Pandemic made Harris leave home to continue his pursuit of the game.

“Washington County didn’t have sports my junior year. I decided to make the jump from Washington County to South Central,” says Harris, “Living with my sister. She’s my big sister, I’m the youngest child. It was just like growing up with my mom... I loved it. It was a great decision for me. It helped me. The coaches helped me improve my game so much.”

“He’s a high character kid man, he’s a really good basketball player,” says South Central head coach Chris Cherry, “He’s great to work with off the court as well.”

A senior season of adversity facing COVID protocols and an ankle injury.

“Two weeks is a long time, without practicing it’s a long time. Then came back I had an ankle injury which set me back,” says Harris, “I had to get back in my groove so it was rough.”

None-the-less, Harris signed with division one Campbell this week to continue his career in college.

“Unbelievable, it’s like a dream come true,” Omar says, “You work so hard since you were a kid 4, 5 growing up.”

“High on academics so that’s good. It has a great Pharmacy program and of course that’s what he is hoping to major in,” says Cherry.

A great fit, taking Omar’s journey full circle, on a campus sort of like home.

“The campus is like in the middle of nowhere but I am used to that in Washington County,” says Harris, “But I like how the campus felt, I like the vibe, everything I got from it. I feel like it was the right choice for me.”

Omar says he reports next month for training.

If you have an athlete you would like to see featured in our Sports Spotlight please let us know. You can submit nominations by email to spotlight@witn.com .

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