This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Of all the places along the Wasatch Front to find a Division I football prospect, it's probably safe to say Gunnison Valley hangs near the bottom of the list. The Bulldogs have not produced a DI gridiron recruit in their history.
Sometime in the next year, that statistic seems likely to change: Junior linebacker Braden Harris is creating a buzz the likes of which Gunnison has rarely - possibly never - seen.
"I get letters all the time," Harris says. "It's a new experience for my family. But I think everyone is pretty proud."
The 220-pound, 6-foot-3 Harris has been making the rounds at camps and campuses all over the West for the last year. A broken hand during the summer set him back, but in this spring alone, he's visited USC, Utah and BYU.
Harris sports an offer from Utah State. But with schools such as Oregon and Boise State also showing interest, it seems to be a matter of time before more offers follow.
"He's moved up a bit, and we think he'll keep moving up," coach Yori Ludvigson says. "He's handled it well. We have 6 a.m. workouts, and he's the first one there. And I think his exposure helps other kids in our program."
The Bulldogs won only two games last season, but Harris led the team with 88 tackles and three sacks.
He says he's leaning toward playing his college ball in Utah, but could be drawn out. He'll stop at Boise's camp and Oregon's camp this year before he makes a decision - preferably by the end of the summer.
But until more offers come in, he'll keep working at improving his game.
"It gives you motivation to prove you're good even if you're just from a small town," Harris says. "It shouldn't affect what people think of you. We work hard out here."
Kyle Goonkgoon@sltrib.comTwitter: @kylegoon