INSTITUTE - Growing up in West Virginia, "I always heard about the North-South football game," said Ripley wide receiver Kade Harrison. "One of my friend's older brother played in it back in 2008, and I get to play in it now."
The 6-3, 180-pound Harrison will be playing for the South Saturday night in the annual state game, the North-South Football Classic, at 7 p.m. at Laidley Field in Charleston.
"I'm pretty honored to be selected to play in this game, since we didn't have a winning season this year," said Harrison during North-South media day at West Virginia State University.
"But apparently, they thought I stood out, so they let me come up here and play for the South squad. I'm pretty happy about it.
"I know Ripley (players) used to be on the North team a few years back, but now we're on the South. I'm just happy to be here, playing with all these great players."
Harrison "played against a lot" of his South teammates as a junior and senior. "So I know what they can do and hopefully, we can get a 'W' Saturday."
Harrison is going to be a wide receiver on offense Saturday night, looking to catch some passes from a pair of quarterbacks, Tyler Seagraves from Nicholas County and Isaiah Kinder from Greenbrier East. "They're both really good," said Harrison. "Isaiah is going to William & Mary to play quarterback, so I know he can play. And Tyler is pretty good as well."
And Harrison noted that "in practice, we've been throwing it a lot, so hopefully, I get a few thrown my way."
Harrison was also a standout basketball player at Ripley. "A few of the players here," said Harrison, "I used to play travel basketball with when we were freshmen - a couple guys from Bluefield and Oak Hill. So I knew a few of them from before and it was good to see them again, as well as to meet people you've played against and now you get to know them too. So it's been a good time."
On which sport he likes better, "I got first-team all-state in football as a senior," said Harrison, "so I guess you could say I'm better in football, but I don't know."
Harrison's junior year at Ripley, "we did all right in football (5-5), and had some good wins like against South Charleston."
For his senior season last fall, "we had a new coach (Dave Tennant) who played at Wahama and came to us from Eastern," said Harrison. "He's a good coach and is turning the program around, so hopefully in the years to come at Ripley, they'll be pretty good."
Harrison is going to college, where he plans to major in nutrition, but said he's "not positive about that yet."
So "this could be my last game," said Harrison. "So I'm going to try to give it my all and hope to have a good game on Saturday. But if not, hopefully at least we win. I've had fun down here, but I definitely want to win."