T.J. Harvison had planned on taking a handful of visits during December, but after his first in Pittsburgh over the weekend, he didn’t need to see anything else.
Harvison — a 6-foot-1, 200-pound running back from Bowdon High in Bowdon, Georgia — committed to Pitt Tuesday over heavy interest from Michigan State, Kansas and Western Kentucky. He picked the school that showed the most love.
“My relationships with the coaches, for one, (was why I committed)” Harvison told Pittsburgh Sports Now, “And two, just being No. 1 on their board, knowing that coach (Andre) Powell and coach (Pat Narduzzi) Narduzzi really wanted me there.”
Since he was officially offered Harvison in early November, after being on the radar since last year, Pitt was the most consistent in his chase. Whether it was Narduzzi or Powell, there was always a voice in his ear telling him that he was a priority.
The mutual interest resulted in an official visit over the weekend, and his experience in Pittsburgh was exactly what he needed to see to make a decision.
“(The visit) went great; it was amazing,” Harvison said. “They really showed me a good time. … I liked the fieldhouse, how they share a facility with the Steelers, just being able to go up there and learn a lot of great things and have a lot of resources to be successful.”
Pitt aligned his academic and athletic interests, and it didn’t hurt that he was able to watch someone like Israel Abanikanda put together an All-American season either.
As Harvison weighed his options, thought hard about what he wanted to do, there came a point where he realized, ‘Hey, that could be me.’ All the success that Abanikanda had in Pitt’s offense could one day be his. It wasn’t lost on his process.
“(The coaches) told me that they want me to be like Izzy, you know what I’m saying? Not like Izzy, but you know, set my own foundation and do what the other greats did at Pitt.
“I’m fast, downhill, powerful and can make a man miss. And I love trucking and love using my off-hand.”
Schley County High School found that out firsthand in the 2022 GHSA Class 1A Division II championship game on Dec. 8 as Harvison ran for 212 yards and a touchdown to guide the Red Devils to a 39-31 victory.
Bowdon High rolled to a 14-1 season in large part because of Harvison’s 2,026 rushing yards and 23 touchdowns on 250 carries (8.1 yards per attempt) and 56 receiving yards and two touchdowns on 12 receptions.
He also added 48 tackles (33 solo), four tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and a recovery defensively.
If it came down to it when facing an opposing defender, Harvison would rather make them miss — be it with a stiff arm, a juke or with a finesse move. He’s big and strong, but he’s also able to make defenders miss.
247Sports rates Harvison as the 1,113th-ranked recruit in the class (71st-ranked running back and 105th-ranked recruit from Georgia). Rivals hasn’t ranked him yet, but he holds a 5.5 Rivals Rating.
Harvison plans to officially sign his Letter of Intent on National Signing Day this month and enroll early at Pitt in January. He forms a strong one-two punch with fellow three-star running back Montravius Lloyd in the class of 2023.