She may only be a freshman, but Harris has become one of the most promising young players in the state.
Nyla Harris, of Dr. Phillips, is only a freshman on the girls basketball team at The First Academy, yet the noise she has made on the court has drawn the eyes of college coaches from all over the country. Her 20.6 points per game is best on the team, and she already has become a leader. She eventually hopes to play college basketball, before making her way to the NBA.
What got you into the game of basketball?
I started basketball when I was in sixth grade, but I was doing dance before. When I first came to school I was dancing, and coach was like, “You’re too tall to be dancing; I’m going to put you at center.” So I decided to come to the tryout and made JV — wasn’t really satisfied by that, but I kept working and did a lot more training because I really, really started liking basketball.
What is your favorite part about playing basketball at TFA?
I just love the atmosphere and the coaches — when it gets tough they help me push through. I just feel like my coach … just pushes me to go a lot harder. There are times when I want to quit, but something inside me says, “I’m trying to get somewhere.”
What’s the most difficult aspect of basketball?
I feel like when we miss a lot of layups or something, we have to run 17s for a long time. When things get hard pushing through, that’s one of the hardest things, but I manage to overcome that.
So far through two years of varsity basketball, what’s been the biggest highlight?
I’ve gotten noticed by a lot colleges. … I have like, 75 letters at home and it’s crazy. Dawn Staley — she coaches South Carolina — I went to the camp for her, and I just played myself and she told my dad she wanted to offer me a free ride. She was my first offer and she said, “I wanted to be the first,” because she didn’t want me to forget about them.
What is the strongest aspect of your game?
I feel like I’m a very good center who runs the court. Most centers are big, bulky girls, and they just really can’t move that much or run as fast as I run.
What do you want to be when you grow up?
I want to major in broadcasting and communications. I want to be an ESPN commentator, so hopefully that’ll happen.
If you could go anywhere, where would you go and why?
I would say Barbados. I just love the name, and I just love how it looks — it looks so calming. Plus that’s where my favorite singer (Rihanna) is from.