Harrell heads into offseason planning to 'enjoy the process'
The next time Camron Harrell dons a helmet on a regular basis, he will do so as an Iowa Hawkeye.
Until then, however, the Bradley-Bourbonnais star -- who recently received Illinois High School Football Coaches Association Class 7A All-State Honorable Mention honors -- said he doesn't necessarily have a plan in preparing for college.
“I'm just going to sit back and enjoy the process as it goes,” Harrell told the Kankakee Times. “I'll just continue working to get faster and stronger with some footwork stuff.”
Harrell, a 5-foot-11-inch defensive back and running back, leaves the Boilermakers program as the all-time touchdown leader, with 44. But that only touches on what kind of all-around player he was for the team.
This last season, in which Bradley-Bourbonnais posted a 10-1 record, Harrell managed 780 rushing yards and 440 receiving yards on the offensive side of the ball, in addition to notching five interceptions on the defensive side.
That versatility was not lost on Iowa. When Harrell dons the black and gold of the Hawkeyes, he will be playing defense predominantly, Harrell said, while also being part of select offensive packages.
“Also maybe a little bit of returning,” he said.
Harrell announced his commitment to Iowa on June 26 via Twitter; he maintains strong feelings about the school.
“Iowa is just the perfect place: it's not too far from home and mainly the culture of Iowa city is unreal,” he said. “It's nice going to a place where no matter what happens, the people of Iowa will forever be there for you. Lastly, the coaching staff. The staff is full of guys who just care about you as a person first; they are great guys, I know they won't be going anywhere through my college career.”
Harrell has demonstrated versatility from the beginning of his football days. He said he started the game by playing for the Bradley Lions in fifth grade. Much like now, he played both sides of the ball then -- center and outside linebacker.
Football is a sport Harrell's always loved.
“All of my cousins played when they were younger and would always tell me stories,” he said. “Their stories persuaded me to play.”
Harrell particularly loves the relationships created by playing the game, as well as the teamwork needed to be successful.
This last season, Harrell said he improved simply by learning to stop thinking and just start playing.
“It makes it a whole lot easier when you can make the game second nature,” he said.
Bradley-Bourbonnais Head Coach Mike Kohl told Kankakee Times in an email interview that Harrell's good works extend beyond the gridiron.
“Best thing I can say about Camron is, he is a tremendous person,” Kohl said. “He cares about our special-needs kids in our building. He is a leader in all phases of his life -- not just on the football field.”
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