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Fmr. NFL star Harmon coaching at Holy Cross

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Former National Football League star and Bayside High School alum Ronnie Harmon has joined the coaching staff at Holy Cross High School, said Knights head coach Tom Pugh.

According to Pugh, the No. 4 all-time receptions leader among running backs joins the veteran staff of coaches at the Flushing school to act as the receivers and running backs coach this season, a season that might be a tough one for the program.

“This isn’t going to be one of our strongest teams, but having a guy like that around is going to help,” Pugh said. “I’ve really solidified my staff. You’re only as good as your staff.”

Harmon’s 11-year NFL career began with the Buffalo Bills in 1986, when the team selected him in the first round of the draft. Under head coach Marv Levy, Harmon became the Bills’ third-down specialist, a label he carried with him throughout his career. He appeared in 14 games his rookie season, rushing for 172 yards on 54 carries and hauling in 22 catches for 185 yards.

His numbers greatly improved the following year, rushing for 485 yards on a career-high 116 attempts, catching 56 passes for 477 yards and scoring four touchdowns.

He played two more years in Buffalo before being acquired by the San Diego Chargers as a Plan-B free agent in 1990. In San Diego, Harmon helped the Chargers win an AFC championship in 1994-95 and went on to catch eight passes in Super Bowl XIXX against the San Francisco 49ers.

His best season on the ground came in 1991, when he rushed for a career-high 544 yards on 89 carries, an average of 6.1 per carry. A year later he set career highs in both receptions (79) and receiving yards (914).

Harmon left San Diego after the 1995 season, when he hauled in 63 receptions for 673 yards and a career-high five touchdowns. As a Charger he averaged 656.5 yards and 63 receptions per season.

He spent the next year with the Houston Oilers and made the trip with the team to Tennessee when they became the Titans a year later. He was cut loose by Tennessee after 11 games and later played one game with the Chicago Bears in 1997.

For his career, Harmon has 582 receptions, behind only Marcus Allen, Roger Craig and Keith Byars, 6,076 receiving yards, 2,774 rushing yards and 34 touchdowns.

The addition of Harmon to Holy Cross comes just after Cross lost the services of offensive line coach Dante Bari, now at Kings Point. Pugh has taken over as offensive line coach this season.

Reach Sports Editor Anthony Bosco by e-mail at TimesLedgr@aol.com or call 229-0300, Ext. 130.

Posted 7:23 pm, October 10, 2011
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