The 2017 Mountaineer football profile series continues with defensive players this week. If you didn’t know that Jalen Harvey was on the team, shame on you for not reading my Defensive Line Preview! Without reading that preview, you couldn’t be blamed for not knowing Harvey’s name, but that will change this year.
Jalen Harvey, DT, #94
Year: Junior (Redshirt)
Hometown: Birmingham, AL
High School: Clay-Chalkville
Junior College: Northwest Mississippi
How he got to Morgantown
Harvey originally committed to Syracuse out of high school. He spent his freshman year redshirting and decided to transfer. He spent the next two years at Northwest Mississippi, where he was a teammate of Justin Crawford and Quondarius Qualls. Harvey made an impact at NWMCC, collecting 67 tackles, 11.5 tackles for loss, 5.0 sacks.
Harvey even blocked three kicks during his two years at Northwest Mississippi.
The Mountaineer coaches offered Harvey before the Missouri game last year and immediately became the favorite for the 300 pound defensive tackle. He would commit soon after.
Harvey is extremely intriguing. He moves well for a big man. He is able to move laterally with ball carriers and doesn’t give up on plays. He does a great job of not getting washed along with the offensive line when teams have tried to run zone.
His football instincts allow him to diagnose plays. He does a good job of using his hands to keep the guards and centers from engaging him.
Harvey will challenge Xavier Pegues for immediate playing time along the defensive line. Where Pegues is under 300 pounds, Harvey is a monster of a man, weighing well over 300 pounds. This may give him an added advantage when the Mountaineers go to their heavy package.
Harvey pushes for playing time immediately. His kick blocking prowess is on display early as he blocks an early field goal attempt by Virginia Tech that ends up being the final margin of victory for the Mountaineers.
Harvey continues to demand playing time as he stuffs the run with ease and pushes Pegues into a rotation. By the time Texas Tech comes to Morgantown, Harvey has won the nose tackle job outright. His ability to penetrate causes teams all sorts of fits and makes life difficult for opponents who try to run inside.
The 2017 Mountaineer profile series will continue to feature defensive players throughout the week.