Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

PSU Basketball

‘I Have More To Give’: John Harrar Soaking in Time Left

Photo from Penn State Twitter (USA Today): John Harrar

You know that scene in the Wizard of Oz when Dorothy tells the Scarecrow that she believes he’ll be the one she misses most of all? 

When John Harrar’s college basketball career comes to an end, Penn State coach Micah Shrewsberry might be able to relate to that. 

Of course, he’d never publically admit that Harrar is his favorite player on the first college team he’s ever been in charge of, and Shrewsberry might not even want to admit it to himself. 

But those who have heard Shrewsberry talk about Harrar throughout this 2021-22 season know that the coach holds No. 21 in the highest regard.

“What I hear Penn State is, I see it every day, and I see it in John,” Shrewsberry said after the Nittany Lions’ loss to Ohio State Dec. 5.

“John’s a warrior, man,” Shrewsberry said after Penn State’s upset win over Michigan State Feb. 15. “He’s a warrior. He gives you everything he has. There is no, ‘did John play hard tonight?’ Yes, John plays hard.”

Of Penn State’s seven seniors honored before Friday’s game against Northwestern, only Harrar and Myles Dread spent their whole college basketball careers in the Blue and White. 

Of those two, only Harrar, a fifth-year senior, was there when Penn State won the NIT in 2018. In the years since Harrar dealt with COVID-19 robbing the Nittany Lions of a sure-fire NCAA tournament bid in 2020, the end of Pat Chambers’s tenure as head coach and the pandemic-themed 2020-21 season.

With everything coming to a close, two days before Senior Night, Harrar said he planned on spending 16 hours in the Bryce Jordan Center Friday to soak everything in.

“I’m on 13 right now,” Harrar said after the game. “I have three more hours at the Bryce Jordan Center here today. I love this place.”

If Penn State lost, it’s a good bet that Harrar would have spent those three hours thinking about what he could have done differently to help the team beat Northwestern.

But thanks largely to Harrar’s career-high 20 rebounds and 11 points, Penn State won, 67-60, and Harrar could spend that time thinking only happy thoughts. 

“I’ll never give to this place what they gave to me,” he said. “I have a saying right now, ‘I have more to give.’ I have a little more to give to this university with my time left here. This place has done everything for me.”

Harrar has three more regular-season games to give, plus the Big Ten tournament. 

His final game on Bryce Jordan Center hardwood is tomorrow night against Nebraska. 

Shrewsberry has a special request for that night. 

“I have a petition on Saturday I’m going to work on,” he said. “I need all you guys to sign it. I need everyone that comes into the BJC on Sunday; we’re going to get that started. If (the NCAA doesn’t) accept it, John’s not going to be here next year.”

The petition, of course, would be for Harrar to be allowed another year at Penn State. 

No, Harrar won’t be back next season, but his presence will still be felt through some of his younger teammates. One of which, sophomore Dallion Johnson, broke double figures for the first time in his career Friday night with 15 points on five three-pointers. 

“He took me under his wing,” Johnson said. “His leadership, I follow. I hope to be a leader like him one day in a couple of years. 

“He sees what John’s work ethic has done for him, and now that pays off for Dallion,” Shrewsberry said. “Now Dallion’s earned it with his hard work.”

Assuming Shrewsberry’s petition isn’t persuasive enough, Harrar won’t be on the floor if and when the Nittany Lions are to return to the NCAA tournament. But he’s made his mark on Penn State and sees the building he played in for five years as an “Acre of Diamonds,” citing a podcast that he’d listened to as his inspiration. 

 “Water to grass where your feet are,” Harrar said. “It will grow. Take care of the present, and just keep getting better every day. Bryce Jordan Center is an Acre of Diamonds. Just keep digging, and you’ll reach the goal. You’ll reach what we want.”

Written By

More from Nittany Sports Now

PSU Basketball Recruiting

1   University of Denver transfer forward Michael Henn has narrowed his school of choice down to three, and Penn State made the list....

PSU Basketball Recruiting

0 Jahnathan Lamothe, a Class of 2023 four-star combo guard out of St. Frances Academy in Balti, MD, has placed Penn State in his...

PSU Basketball

0 Penn State men’s basketball power forward John Harrar has been invited to a NFL roie minicamp by the Philaphia Eagles according to his...

Penn State

0 Friday afternoon, Penn State introduced its next athletic director at a late-morning press conference in the Beaver Stadium media room. Word bre Tuesday...

Get Nittany Sports Now in your inbox

Sign-up for email updates and get the whole story first from the Nittany Sports Now team, delivered straight to your inbox.

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.