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Harris becomes the first non-kicker woman to sign a letter of intent



Toni Harris scored on Tuesday, becoming the first football player to sign a letter of intent and accept a scholarship at Central Methodist University, a Missouri university.

Harris made the headlines for the first time when he was offered a scholarship in January 2018 to play football at Bethany College, an NAIA school in Kansas.

Detroit's 5-foot-7, 164-pound security has been playing football at East Los Angeles College in California for two seasons and will continue her college career at the Central Methodist.

Becca Longo, an Arizona kicker, was the first woman to sign a letter of national intent at Division II or higher, when she signed with Adams State in Colorado last April.

Shelby Osborne signed with Campbellsville University in Kentucky in 2014, but she was not initially a fellow. The defensive back subsequently received a partial scholarship during his registration at the school.

Harris began playing football at the age of 6 in Detroit, before playing at the wide and half corner catcher at the Redford Union High School in Michigan. Although she missed the 2017 season at East Los Angeles College, she had three tackles and one tackled for defeat in 2018.

Featured in a Toyota advertisement aired during the Super Bowl, Harris has been in the limelight since she received her first Bethany College offer.

As a woman, she struggled to find a college to play football. This is how she found herself at East Los Angeles College, where she had the opportunity to play.

"Many coaches did not believe in me," Harris told ESPN in January. "A coach told me that no one would ever play for you to be at the next level, in the end you have to excel, I will focus on my goals."

Her ultimate goal is to play in the NFL, but for the moment, she is content with the opportunity presented to her at Central Methodist.

"The NFL is the dream," Harris said in a question and answer forum on ESPNW. "I'm going to work there until I die, whether I'm drafted or not written, I'm pretty sure I'll keep my faith and God will take me there."


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