Found September 12, 2012 on
Fox Sports Ohio:
The weight room in the indoor field house at Kent State University will soon be named after Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison.
A donation of 100,000 will do that.
Harrison, an Akron, Ohio native who played at Kent State before embarking upon a unique, winding NFL journey that's taken him from street free agent to NFL Defensive Player of the Year, had his 100,000 donation approved by the school's board of trustees on Wednesday.
The Steelers released Harrison three times in 2002-03. He signed an offseason contract with the Baltimore Ravens and played a season in NFL Europe. He re-signed with the Steelers after the Ravens released him, and in 2004 got a spot start when starting outside linebacker Joey Porter was ejected for a pregame fight at Cleveland.
His career has taken off from there. He was the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2008, the same year he returned an interception 100 yards for a touchdown in Super Bowl XLIII, and is a four-time Pro Bowler. Harrison, now 34, is battling back from knee surgery and missed last week's Steelers season opener at Denver.
Kent State's news release said Harrison's donation will fund scholarships and facility upgrades. Having his name on the weight room will have special meaning to Harrison. Early in his career, Harrison would return to campus in the NFL offseason to work with then-Kent State strength coach Ryan Tedford.
He now lives and trains in Arizona in the offseason but has remained close to the school, attending last season's nationally-televised game vs. Central Michigan and watching from the sidelines.
"We are extremely grateful to James for his commitment to Kent State and the football program," Kent State athletic director Joel Nielsen said. "He is one of the most recognizable figures in the NFL today and his support is sure to have a lasting effect on our student-athletes now and in the future."
A Kent State source said Harrison started inquiring about how he could donate to the program "shortly after the ink was dry on his new contract," a 51 million deal he signed in 2009.
"It means something to James to be a part of things at Kent," the source said. "He genuinely cares."
He's also been an active fundraiser at Akron Coventry, his high school alma mater, and has made donations to the football program and student-athletes there while asking that his work not make headlines.
There's a rags to riches theme in his pre-NFL story, too. The youngest of 14 children, Harrison showed up at Kent State as an academic non-qualifier for football in 1998 and drove a student campus bus while paying his own way. He got eligible, got on scholarship and played for the Flashes from 1999-2001. The Flashes last had a winning season in 2001, going 6-5 in part thanks to a late, game-saving sack by Harrison in the season finale over Miami-Ohio.
The quarterback he sacked? Ben Roethlisberger, now his teammate in Pittsburgh.
Harrison's head coach at Kent State was Dean Pees, who's now the Ravens defensive coordinator. Harrison's one-time Kent State teammate, Cleveland Browns return specialist Joshua Cribbs, also pledged 100,000 to the school when his jersey was retired in a 2010 ceremony.
Harrison's Kent State jersey isn't retired -- yet. His donation ensures that his legacy will live on.
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AROUND THE WEB
James Harrison was hopeful to play Week one against Denver, but he wasn’t ready. Heading into Week two its the same story. Harrison’s knee injury will hold him out for the second straight week.
In his place will be a tandem of Chris Carter and Jason Worilds.
Also on the injury list are ContinueThe post James Harrison Will Sit vs Jets appeared first on SteelBlitz.
The Pittsburgh Steelers have wrapped up their Friday practice session in preparation for their Sunday home opener at Heinz Field against the New York Jets and the final injury report is now out.
Linebacker James Harrison (knee) and safety Troy Polamalu (calf) both sat out for a third straight day on Friday and both are listed as questionable. Despite their questionable listing...
ESPN New York reports linebacker James Harrison is hoping to play in Pittsburgh's next game on Sunday versus the Jets.Fantasy Spin:Harrison missed Sunday's season opener against Denver while tending to his injured left knee. He was able to work out on Monday and if all goes well this week, Harrison could be back in uniform Sunday at Heinz Field.
According to Mike Bires of TimesOnline.com, Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison worked out on Monday and might play this week against the Jets.
Good news in injury front: LB James Harrison (knee) worked out Monday and may play Sunday vs. Jets
— Mike Bires (@mikebires) September 11, 2012
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According to Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, even though on Thursday Steelers linebacker James Harrison claimed that he’ll be playing this weekend, it doesn’t look like that will be the case.
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According to a report in the Pittsburgh Post-GazetteSteelers by Ed Bouchette linebacker James Harrison will miss Sunday's game with the New York Jets. Bouchette is rarely wrong in these matters.Fantasy Spin:This is good news for the Jets' offense as a healthy Harrison is a disruptive force to be reckoned with. Harrison had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee Aug. 15.
According to Alan Robinson of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review, Steelers head coach Mike omlin is hopeful that linebacker James Harrison will be ready to go this Sunday against the Jets.
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Steelers linebacker James Harrison will make his season debut Sunday against the Jets according to ESPN.com.Fantasy Spin:Harrison had surgery on his left knee a little over a month ago and is finally ready to go. His presence should make life a little more difficult for New York QB Mark Sanchez, who breezed to a 266-yard/three touchdown performance in the season opener against Buffalo.
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Last week, Harrison practiced...
Even though Steelers linebacker James Harrison says he’s playing on Sunday against the Jets, Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette wouldn’t be surprised if both Harrison and safety Troy Polamalu don’t play.
Don’t be surprised if James Harrison AND Troy Polamalu don’t play against the Jets. Each sat out again today.
— Gerry Dulac (@gerrydulac) September 13, 2012
The Steelers are hopeful right outside linebacker James Harrison will be on the field Sunday against the Jets. Coach Mike Tomlin said Harrison (knee) was able to work out Monday. "He will run (Wednesday) and see where he is," Tomlin said. "We'll work him up to activity and let that be our guide." The Steelers had two sacks in the season opener at Denver...
Season 3, Episode 16 of The Terrible Podcast is up and co-host David Todd I start of by going over the Thursday injury report and look closely at the status of Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison and safety Troy Polamalu heading into the Friday practice session. Is the status of Harrison moving forward a concern? We discuss.
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