Toni Harris made history this week by accepting a scholarship offer to play football at Central Methodist University in Missouri, becoming the first female player at a skill position to sign a letter of intent.
A native of Detroit, who played free safety last fall at East Los Angeles Community College, Harris announced the news Tuesday on Twitter.
Harris, 22, chose Central Methodist over offers from at least four other schools, according to a report in Sports Illustrated.
Harris has been playing football since she was 6. She played wide receiver and cornerback in high school in Michigan. She made three tackles and one tackle for a loss last season at East L.A.
“A lot of coaches didn’t believe in me,” Harris told ESPN in January. “A coach told me nobody’s ever going to play you to be at the next level. In the end, you’ve got to push yourself. I’m going to focus on my goals.”
Harris, who was featured in a Toyota commercial that aired during Super Bowl LIII, said her ultimate goal is to reach the NFL.
“The NFL is the dream,” Harris said in an espnW Q&A. “I’m going to be working toward that until the death of me. Whether I go drafted or undrafted, I’m pretty sure I’m going to keep my faith and God is going to take me there.”
In 2017, Becca Longo, a kicker from Arizona, became the first female to earn a football scholarship to an NCAA school at the Division II level or higher when she committed to Adams State University in Alamosa, Colo.
—Field Level Media