Former Alabama running back Najee Harris enjoyed a large gathering to celebrate his first-round selection in the 2021 NFL Draft on Thursday.
That’s because Harris, who went 24th overall to the Steelers, hosted it at the Greater Richmond Interfaith Program, a homeless shelter in Richmond, Calif. It’s where he, his parents and four siblings lived for several years before he became one of the top college football prospects in the country.
Harris wasn’t there just to enjoy the draft party in his honor, either. He brought a donation of food for the current residents as the program’s most notable success story.
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Whatever team drafts Alabama’s Najee Harris is getting a special person. Today he threw a draft party for kids at the homeless shelter where he lived for several years growing up. He told me it was emotional the first time he went back to visit. @kron4news #NFLDraft #RollTide pic.twitter.com/JadBIFh4pd
— Kylen Mills (@KylenMills) April 30, 2021
“There was a time I needed a helping hand. They gave us an opportunity to get back on our feet,” Harris told San Francisco TV station KRON. “So it is my job to give back.”
“It was really emotional for my mom,” Harris added. “Almost as if she was crying, in a way, because we have a lot of memories here. That was a time in my life when it was really low.”
Harris enters the NFL as one of Alabama’s most accomplished running backs, owning career records for rushing yards (3,843) and touchdowns (46). He’s coming off a season in which he was a unanimous All-America selection and the Doak Walker Award winner, rushing for 1,466 yards and 26 touchdowns while adding 425 yards and four touchdowns receiving.