NATCHITOCHES — Junior quarterback Paul Harris, a former Tara High School standout, was dismissed from the Northwestern State football team Wednesday for disciplinary reasons after falling short of stipulations for his return from an earlier suspension, said Demons head coach Bradley Dale Peveto.
Harris, a second-team Preseason All-Southland Conference selection this year, returned last week from a suspension stemming from his conduct during NSU’s season-opening 24-23 win over Delta State on Sept. 1.
Harris missed three complete games and all but the first quarter of the Delta State game for disciplinary reasons related to outbursts on the sideline and in the team locker room at halftime. He played two snaps as the backup quarterback, running twice for 4 yards, Saturday night against McNeese in Turpin Stadium.
Harris started the season-opening home game with Delta State but came out in a pre-determined rotation after his second series. He was benched for the remainder of the half for disciplinary reasons by Peveto.
After further problems in the locker room at halftime, Peveto directed Harris to get out of uniform and not return to the stands.
The next day, Peveto announced an indefinite suspension of the former Tara High school player, who started 14 games as a Demon.
Before being reinstated, Harris signed a contract listing conditions for him to remain on the team, and came back on “strike two” according to Peveto, meaning any further problems would result in his removal from the program.
“There was failure to meet the standards that we established for Paul to be a member of our team,” said Peveto. “We agreed upon those expectations and unfortunately Paul fell short.”
“The team comes first.”
Harris is ranked 10th all-time on the Demons’ top-10 list in passing yardage (2,832 yards) and total offense (3,632).
He tied a school record with four touchdown passes last year at Southeastern Louisiana when he set another record with 11 consecutive completions at the outset of the game.
Junior college transfer Brad Henderson, who has completed 64 percent of his passes, took over for Harris against Delta State and led a comeback from a 17-0 halftime deficit to the win. He has been the starter since.
Redshirt freshman Don Canyon moves back into the second-team quarterback role, said Peveto.
NSU continues Southland Conference play Saturday night at Lamar.