Going into his senior season, Northwestern defensive back Matthew Harris wanted to honor his departed father. So he changed numbers.
— Adam Rittenberg (@ESPNRittenberg) August 10, 2016
Harris will change his number from 27 to 11, a reflection of his father’s birthday: Nov. 11. Harris’ father, Russell Sr., passed away in 2007.
Harris, who started 11 games at cornerback for Northwestern in 2015, led the Wildcats with four interceptions. He took one of his picks 72 yards for a touchdown in a win against Eastern Illinois.
Harris has emerged despite injury setbacks, including a scary moment at Penn State in 2014 when he had to get carted off the field. He gave a thumbs up to the crowd on the way out of the stadium and returned the next game. He started all 12 games.
Now, with one more season to go, Harris will use it to honor his father.