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Before marrying Stewart’s father, George, Lusia Harris was a three-time All-American in basketball at Delta State and helped lead the United States to a silver medal in the 1976 Olympics. She’s also a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame and was the first and only woman ever officially drafted by an NBA team _ by New Orleans in 1977.

“My mom has a lot of plaques and trophies and every Hall of Fame,” Stewart said, “so, it was a great thing to grow up with, to have that kind of background _ to reach for a goal and continue with it.”

Stewart made it through his first year of law school and has about two more to go. But if all goes right, he won’t be finishing up anytime soon. He’s currently listed as second on the Jets‘ depth chart behind starter Matt Slauson and should see plenty of time against Houston in New York’s preseason opener Monday night.

“He’s raw, but he also has really good tools,” Slauson said. “Brandon Moore and I talk about him all the time, and we think he actually has really good feet. His steps are perfect. He just has to figure out how to bring it all together.”

Stewart, who’s from Houston, said he’ll have at least 20 friends and family members at Reliant Stadium.

“It’s a dream to be able to do this,” Stewart said. “A couple of months ago, I had no idea where I was going to be and now I’m going to be in an NFL game.”

Stewart went undrafted and wondered when _ and if _ the NFL lockout would end. He also had no clue if he’d even be signed when he did. So, he filled his time interning as a clerk at the Lanier Law Firm in Houston and trying to stay in shape.

“That was life,” Stewart said. “I was pretty concerned. And then, the Jets called.”

For now, protecting quarterbacks is his top priority. Defending clients or prosecuting criminals _ he hasn’t decided which _ will wait until his football dream is over.

“Hopefully that’s not for a while,” he said. “I’ll definitely finish, though. One of my professors said it would be a very intimidating thing for me to walk into the courtroom as a prosecutor, so he’s tried to push me in that direction.”

Yep, imagine a 6-foot-5, 331-pound, muscle-bound mountain of a man arguing cases.

“It’s kind of so far down the road for me in my head, so if it happens, it happens,” Stewart said. “Hopefully I’ll still have hair then and my dreads, so that would be even more intimidating. We’ll see _ someday.”


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