CALGARY - With a 6-foot-4 frame, you get the feeling Edwin Harrison wasn’t bullied much as a youngster.
So when the Calgary Stampeders’ hulking offensive tackle compared Tuesday’s practice at McMahon Stadium to his first day as a high-school student, he meant it as a good thing.
When he emerged from the locker-room for the Stamps’ first prep session of the week, Harrison was wearing pads for the first time since suffering a torn pectoral muscle just a few days before training camp.
“I told my roommate (Stanley Bryant) this morning, it kind of feels like the first day of high school,” Harrison said. “I was a little nervous and a little excited all at the same time. I haven’t felt that way about football probably since I came out of college and was going to the NFL. That was the same feeling as coming back out here. It’s just a great feeling.”
The feeling is mutual.
Although he won’t be available for Saturday’s date with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, Harrison’s return to practice drills is definitely good news for the Stamps.
“He looked good — he didn’t show any signs of pain when there was any contacts and his feet were good, so it’s just a matter of keep rehabbing and getting stronger,” said Stamps GM/head coach John Hufnagel. “He’s an offensive lineman, and they’re using their pectoral muscle all the time. That’s the main muscle in their blocking technique, along with their legs. So we just have to make sure that he’s fully ready for that type of work, and he is.”
Harrison started 15 games at right tackle last season and was the club’s nominee for the CFL’s Most Outstanding Rookie award.
Although the 26-year-old has been limited in his weight training and remains on the nine-game injured list, he’s optimistic he won’t have to watch too many more games from the sidelines.
“I’m just so thankful to be back,” Harrison said. “It’s been feeling great. Our head trainer, Pat Clayton, and our doctors have given me the full vote of confidence that I’m going to be alright. The biggest thing for me is me, getting the confidence back not only in the chest and in my mind, as well, and knowing that I will be able to do my job effectively all the time.
“The type of person that I am, if you tell me I can do something, I’m going to go all the way,” he added. “Sometimes I think I push myself more than others would push me, which is probably why I got into this situation that I’m in. But I’m doing great. I have every bit of confidence that I’ll be back, ready to go, asap.
“All I can do is be ready when my number is called. And that’s what I’ll do. I’ll be ready.”
As expected, R Ken-Yon Rambo (Achilles tendinitis) and R Larry Taylor (bruised leg) both missed Tuesday’s practice. DE Charleston Hughes (leg) was also a spectator.