February 14, 2010

Humble Harris calls McDonald's honor a dream

Tobias Harris added another accolade to his already impressive list of trophies and all-star teams when it was announced Thursday he would play in the prestigious McDonald's High School All-American game March 31 in Columbus, Ohio.

For the 6-foot-8 Tennessee signee, it was just another opportunity to be humble.

"It's a dream come true. To be selected for that is an honor, and I've just got to be working hard," Harris said. "It means a lot. It just means that you've been recognized by a lot of people and to play in that game is real, real special. I'm just going to try and play my best in the game, plan on winning and just have fun."

Before Harris plays in the esteemed all-star game, he and his Half Hallow Hills West basketball team will try and finish what is shaping up to be a perfect season.

After Friday night's 80-52 victory over Smithtown West, when Harris contributed 28 points, 15 boards, 11 blocks and five steals, his team sat at 14-0.

"We're playing good and we're just keeping it up. We have a couple of tough games coming up, but we should be good," Harris continued. "We have a really solid team. If we just keep going we should be good."

The Rivals.com five-star prospect and perhaps biggest signee of Tennessee coach Bruce Pearl's career isn't the only Harris in the family that has shown to be an outstanding player. Younger brother Tyler is scoring in double figures and on most nights you can find him only trailing his big brother in the scoring department.

"It's really good. We just keep working hard on and off the floor. We just keep after it with one-another," Harris said of the sibling dominance.

Although Harris is concentrating on his high school season and his team's quest for a state championship, he said the upcoming months leading into his transition to Knoxville will be spent working out and playing in more all-star events.

"Well, it's going to be winning the state championship and then just getting ready for college," Harris said of his immediate future. "I'm working out real hard now like every day after school, after games at night. Basically, just working out for the future so I'm ready when I'm going."

Along with the McDonald's game, Harris hopes to add the Jordan Brand All-Star Game to his resume. One game that Harris is scheduled to play in April is the well-regarded Nike Hoop Summit in Portland, Ore.

The game features 10 of the United States' best players against 10 of the rest of the world's best players under 19-years-old. Past games have included NBA stars Kevin Durant, Kevin Garnett and Derek Rose while the World Select Team has featured the likes of Dirk Nowitzki and Tony Parker.

Harris takes pride in knowing that his name will now be along such greats and others when it comes to participating in the all-star games.

"It's real cool, it's just a blessing. It's just been a lot of hard work. But, my training is all paying off," Harris said.

And while in the midst of a state championship run, preparing for the future and about to take on some of the world's best basketball players, he still has time to keep up with his Vols.

"With my schedule I still watch all their games," Harris said. "It's been a lot of up and downs in the season, but we just got to keep getting through it and keeping the heart."

Harris is a five-star prospect and No. 5 player nationally, according to Rivals.com.

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