On Sunday inside of the Kansas State Fiesta Bowl press briefing, Wildcat senior wide receiver Chris Harper suddenly found himself surrounded by beat reporters who typically follow the Oregon Ducks.
Actually, it was no surprise to Harper considering he began his college football career in 2008 when he became an Oregon Duck as a highly touted quarterback.
After sitting down in the bright lights of video cameras and flash bulbs, Harper just grinned and welcomed the large group of reporters with a single and distinct sentence.
“I wonder what all of you want to talk about” laughed Harper.
Harper seemed relaxed and willing to discuss his past football life in Eugene.
One question on most everyone’s mind was why Harper chose to leave a growing and prosperous program that would go on to a Rose Bowl and national championship berth.
Wanting to play quarterback for the Ducks and then being moved to the slot and wide receiver position, most surmised it was that position change that pushed Harper to leave the Ducks to play for Bill Snyder and Kansas State.
“Absolutely not” said Harper when asked if that was the reason he transferred. “The only reason was to come home,…it was that simple,..and nothing more.”
Harper, who comes from Wichita Kansas, has prospered as a Wildcat and is certainly the favorite target of quarterback Collin Klein.
His numbers aren’t awe inspiring, ( 50 receptions – 786 yards – 3 touchdowns ), however he’s become the Wildcats deep threat which gives opposing defenses something additional to think about.
Having played for the ever present Chip Kelly and the extremely quiet Bill Snyder, two coaches who couldn’t be more different, Harper was asked to compare the two in the way they coach their players and teams.
“One thing that’s the same about them is that both just want to coach,” Harper said. “They don’t want to do the extra stuff that goes with the coaching. They just want to coach the players…Snyder is more conservative and Kelly is more progressive. We are a more traditional program and Oregon is more futuristic.”
( Watch Chris Harper’s interview by clicking on the video box above )