Cooper Harris: vital asset to football team

There’s a lot to take in at football games. Hazy air and the lingering glow from pregame fireworks set the mood. The smell of popcorn and sweaty players infiltrates the riot of the student section and the marching band’s instruments carry the school’s fight song across the entire field.  

An average Perry football game attender would take notice of all these things. However, fans often overlook a vital aspect to the team: Senior team manager, Cooper Harris.

Harris, who assumed his position as a sophomore, is in charge of keeping the team motivated and prepared. He contributes in a number of ways and whether he’s grabbing water and towels, or giving the team a pep talk after a rough game, you can count on Cooper to do it with a grin and a high-five.

“My favorite part is providing wisdom and inspiration for the team,” Harris explained.

Harris works mostly with the defensive lineman. However, this does not stop him from having a large impact on the entire team, coaching staff included.

“I think Cooper helps us keep everything in perspective,” Head coach Preston Jones explained. “He loves being around the game; being around the boys.”

The coaches are not the only ones who notice Cooper’s motivation. Quarterback Chubba Purdy commented “He [Harris] really inspires everybody to work hard everyday.” Purdy later added that “He’s always happy and really energetic.”

Cooper’s post game pep talks have become something of a tradition for the team. All the guys gather around in the locker to hear what their team manager has to say about their performance. “His speeches are actually really good!” Purdy added. The pep talks boost the team spirit after a crushing loss, and congratulate them after a big win.

“We always share a vision of helping the players learn selflessness and bravery in and out of the field”. Harris explained.

This attitude is the one Cooper strives to project on to the Unified football field.

Harris averaged 3 touchdowns per Unified game. Additionally, he holds a personal record of 20 or more flags pulled over the entirety of the season. With 3 sacks and 4 first downs, Cooper made numerous contributions to the Unified team’s defense, offense, and overall moral.

Cooper expanded on the relationship between his Unified and football experiences. “Unified actually helps me be more introduced to the football field than I already have [been],” he said.

Balancing multiple sports at a time can be challenging for any athlete, yet Cooper has stepped up to the challenge with a smile on his face.

Coach Jones summed this up, saying “He’s always a pleasure to have around.”