April 29, 2007
Cardinal safety Brandon Harrison, a four-year letter-winner and three-year starter, became the third Stanford player taken in the 2007 NFL Draft today as he was chosen in the fifth round - the 144th overall pick - by the Houston Texans. Harrison joins quarterback Trent Edwards (third round, Buffalo) and linebacker Michael Okwo (third round, Chicago) as Stanford's three NFL picks.
"Oh man, relief," said Harrison after hearing of his selection. "I told myself that I wasn't going to watch the draft, but I watched about 11 hours yesterday and I have been watching it all morning today, so I was just glad to get the call."
Harrison played in 44 of 45 possible games in his career, starting 33 of 34 contests over his final three seasons (2004-06). He Started all 22 games in 2004 and 2005 at strong safety before splitting up his 11 starts in 2006 with six of them coming at safety and five at cornerback. Harrison finished his career with 186 tackles (127 solo, 59 assisted), 2.0 sacks, 7.0 tackles-for-loss, five interceptions, three fumble recoveries, a blocked kick, one forced fumble and 16 pass breakups.
"I know they have a young team and an exciting team" Harrison said of the Texans. "I know they have a nice new stadium. I got to see it. I played in the All-Star Game right after my senior year in high school and we got to tour the facility a little bit. So besides that, I am pretty much an open book, just ready to get out there and check everything out."
"I went into this weekend without a whole lot of expectation," he said. "but it was tough. When you are seeing safeties coming off the board and a lot of guys I know and guys I know of. It was tough. I thought maybe a little bit earlier, but you know like I said, I am glad to be in Houston, close to home, and I'm excited to be in there and start working."
Harrison played most of his Cardinal career at strong safety, but he also played free safety and cornerback. He was drafted by the Texans as a safety.
"Absolutely I'm comfortable playing free safety," he said. "A lot of what we did, honestly, in my time at Stanford, we almost just played left and right. So depending on the situation and the call we were pretty much interchangeable at free and strong. And I think, from what I can tell I think they might be looking for somebody to step in and help out free safety, so if that is what I need to do, then I can do that as well."