James Harrison, Jr. (born May 4, 1978) is an American football linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers of the National Football League. He was signed by the Steelers as an undrafted free agent in 2002. He played college football at Kent State.
A four-time Pro Bowl selection, Harrison has earned Super Bowl rings with the Steelers in Super Bowl XL and Super Bowl XLIII. He has also been a member of the Baltimore Ravens.
Born in Akron, Ohio, Harrison was the youngest of 14 children to James Sr. (a chemical truck driver) and Mildred. He played little league baseball in Scranton, PA for Sloan little league's Green Team. He was selected to the All-Star team in 1991. He grew up in Akron, and his favorite NFL team was the Cleveland Browns, who played only 40 miles from his house. His mother did not want him to play at first. It took both Harrison and his best friend from childhood, David Walker, to convince her. When he started to play, he excelled at both linebacker and running back. He attended two high schools his freshman year, Archbishop Hoban High School before attending Coventry High School. He was one of the first African-Americans to play football at Coventry, and he graduated in 1998.