Q&A: Bulldogs beat odds to land Ridgeland’s Devin Bowman

A Q&A WITH DEVIN BOWMAN:

The Bulldogs not only won over Devin Bowman but his mother Tara as well. (Family photo)

The Bulldogs not only won over Devin Bowman but his mother Tara as well. (Family photo)

Georgia is now up to six commitments for its football recruiting class of 2011. But easily the most refreshing surprise for the Bulldogs so far was the pledge of Rossville’s Devin Bowman. The dynamic two-way athlete from Ridgeland High committed to UGA after a visit to Athens last weekend. What makes Bowman’s decision surprising? UGA had much going against it. Bowman’s older brother Michael Bowman is a sophomore wide receiver at Alabama and Devin had expressed a desire to play with him in college. Also, Michael Bowman went Bama’s way in part because of an embarrassing situation that occurred in 2007 when his parents, Tara and Terrance Bowman, were on an official recruiting visit at UGA. Their oldest son, Adarius Bowman, was a star wide receiver for Oklahoma State and the Bowmans were decked out in Cowboys’ orange and black for the game. They were told by UGA recruiting officials if they wanted to sit in their seats in the recruits’ section they needed to change. They chose to leave. But all that appears to be water under the bridge now as Georgia coach Mark Richt smoothed over things with Ms. Bowman and the Bulldogs won over both the family and their youngest son. In the process not only did Georgia get a play-making cornerback (six interceptions as a junior, two for TDs) with size (6-feet, 175 pounds) it so desires, but also an athlete with offensive skills (965 yards rushing, 11 TDs, 1 kickoff return TD, 1 punt return TD). I talked to Bowman on the phone Thursday and here’s a Q&A from that conversation:

Q: So congratulations on your commitment. What has the reaction been there in Rossville?

A. “Right now I’m mostly hearing congratulations. Everybody here is happy about it. It’s big Bulldog country here. It really is. So the feedback has been real positive. Other than that I’ve just concentrating on my schoolwork.”

Q: Was it a difficult choice for you with Michael playing ball over at Alabama?

A: “I mean, it was kind of hard because at the beginning I really wanted to go to Alabama with my brother. But since I’ve been going over to Georgia they’ve made me happy and they really made my mom happy. That’s a big plus. And another plus, it feels like me just being at home. I love the state of Georgia. That’s why.”

Q: What did Georgia do to win over your mother?

A: “I think the thing is, what really got her, was their promise that they’re going to take care of me as a parent would, even though they’re not my parents. I can’t remember exactly what they told her but the big thing was that they were going to take care of me and I guess she liked that because she was really loving them.”

Q: Now if I understand it correctly, you still haven’t received an official offer from Alabama. Does that bother you?

A: “No, sir. I mean, it kind of does to a point. I’m not trying to say anything to brag but I know I’m good. If I wasn’t good I wouldn’t have the offers I have now. So it does [bother me]. But at the end of the day I guess Georgia was the best for me.”

Q: So what happens if Bama comes forth with an offer now? Is that going to shake up your recruitment?

A: “No, sir. I’m positive about this. I’m a Bulldog. It really doesn’t matter [what Alabama does].”

Q: You play running back at Ridgeland High and a lot of schools are recruiting you at that position. But the Bulldogs want you as a cornerback all the way, right?

A: “I’m going there to be a corner but the offensive coordinator, Coach [Mike] Bobo, really wants me to play offense. So I’m going to touch the ball somewhat, kind of like what they’re doing with Branden Smith.”

Q: Is there any one person or player that you’ve become particularly close to at Georgia?

A: “Coach [Stacy] Searels. I really like him a lot. He’s a cool guy. He went to Trion.”

Q: So what’s next for you? Do you plan to attend any camps this summer? Are you going to take any more visits or does this shut down your recruitment altogether?

A: “Right now I’m going to Georgia but I’m still going to take some visits just to see other colleges. I’m going to take a few visits.”

61 comments Add your comment

Riley

April 23rd, 2010
8:20 am

He comes from a family with a pretty great athletic background, so hopefully he’ll end up at UGA. I’m still skeptical of most commits a year in advance, though.

Dap

April 23rd, 2010
8:33 am

Congratulations Mr. Bowman. You are going to be a great home state hero.

p-HO

April 23rd, 2010
8:33 am

UGA never offered Michael so how did he choose Bama over UGA, lol

Top Dawg

April 23rd, 2010
8:38 am

Welcome to the Bulldog Nation Devin

I can’t wait till I see you playing between the hedges

Dawg Fan

April 23rd, 2010
8:45 am

Devin you are Da Man and will flourish under in our new D. Sounds like Bobo has some plans for you too!

Gooooo Dawgs! Sic ‘em!

South Georgia Dawg

April 23rd, 2010
8:46 am

Welcome to the Dawg Nation!

fez

April 23rd, 2010
8:47 am

I agree. It sounds all nice and dandy at the moment, but I’ll wait until signing day to get excited. No way will St. Saban sit by knowing he has this kid’s big brother.

Georgia Girl

April 23rd, 2010
8:48 am

Can’t wait till I see you wearing the Red & Black.

Goooooo Dawgs!!!!

jbeggs

April 23rd, 2010
8:49 am

“Right now I’m going to Georgia but I’m still going to take some visits just to see other colleges. I’m going to take a few visits.” It aint over – trust me. 1. His feelings are hurt by no offer from bammer and his brother is there. 2. He’s taking other visits. If bammer offers he’s gone.

Hey, Fez

April 23rd, 2010
8:50 am

Give Devin some credit. He is not Nic Satan’s puppet.

He is is own MAN.

Tim

April 23rd, 2010
9:03 am

Chip – Again with the digs at UGA. If you recall, Michael openly stated his desire to play for the Bulldogs. He was very vocal about it in his interviews. For whatever reason, UGA never offered, so he went to Bama. Great school and I hope he does well at Bama, but please, stop with the he “chose Bama over UGA” stuff. That’s simply not the case. That’s like me saying I chose to work in corporate america over playing in the NBA.

Tim

April 23rd, 2010
9:05 am

As with any recruits, I won’t be convinced until the ink is dry in February. It will get pretty interesting if/when Bama does offer him.

Dawg Man

April 23rd, 2010
9:08 am

We’re glad to have you b/t the hedges. GATA DAWGS!!!!

Pago Flyer

April 23rd, 2010
9:09 am

He’ll still do more “visits”….makes you wonder….?

Hey, jbeggs

April 23rd, 2010
9:10 am

1. “But since I’ve been going over to Georgia they’ve made me happy and they really made my mom happy. That’s a big plus. And another plus, it feels like me just being at home. I love the state of Georgia. That’s why.”

2. Taking additional visits is very common with early commitments. 99.98% of the time they honor their commitment.

P.S. Are you a Dawg fan or are you just trying to spew up some crape?

Big Dawg

April 23rd, 2010
9:13 am

Sic ‘em Devin!

JB

April 23rd, 2010
9:18 am

I think one of the things people talk about Richt being soft ( I’m guessing because of past results) is that if Georgia is after a in state guy hard and he commits to another school, Mark Respects that and goes on, but by a couple of commits dumping us the last two years, other schools continue to recruit these young men. Mark needs to know that golf is a gentleman’s game, not SEC football.

AEPi90

April 23rd, 2010
9:35 am

Quiet, I am busy counting chickens (I mean committments)!
Darn, another one hatched.
Now I have to start counting again…

CONFEDERATE DAWG

April 23rd, 2010
9:35 am

ILL ASSUME HIS PARENTS EXPLAINED WHY THEY WERE WEARING ORANGE AND IF GA STILL ASKED THEM TO CHANGE THATS IN VERY POOR TASTE ON GA’S PART. COME ON DAWGS.

da'rick again?

April 23rd, 2010
9:44 am

i dont like the feel of this. i bet bama comes in w/an offer now, and there goes another recruit…

RxDawg

April 23rd, 2010
9:51 am

Sounds like another solid kid. Welcome to the Dawg nation Devin. You’ll enjoy have the inter-family rivalries with your brothers down the road. My sis went to Auburn, I went to UGA (and Ga Southern for what it’s worth). We have a blast every year during the AU vs. UGA game and to this day is still my favorite rivalry of the year.

ugaaccountant

April 23rd, 2010
9:53 am

“2. Taking additional visits is very common with early commitments. 99.98% of the time they honor their commitment.”

We all know that 47% of statistics are made up on the spot, but verbal committments are broken at a much higher rate than you imply. Maybe it’s 1 in 10 or maybe even more. This one will probably worry me until signing day since he has a brother at another school. You never know what could happen in a kids life over the next year to make him decide he wants to be in school with his brother.

I’m extremely happy to have him as a dawg though. Sounds like exactly the size and skills we want in a cornerback.

Paddy

April 23rd, 2010
10:04 am

jbeggs, I must disagree. This kid comes across as a solid Bulldog. You can’t blame a kid for taking free trips to other places. I would, if I had the opportunity to do just the same as he is doing. It’s just part of the deal nowadays.

Chip Towers

April 23rd, 2010
10:12 am

Tim: You’re right. That was a mischaracterization of the situation so I’ve changed it. I went back into the archives and read up on the situation and you were right that the Dogs never offered Michael Bowman though he clearly wanted them to. However, I disagree that it was a “dig at UGA.” Anyway, thanks for the feedback.

So....

April 23rd, 2010
10:14 am

The bottom line is…… Bama wasn’t going to offer.

what i heard

April 23rd, 2010
10:35 am

RIGHT NOW I’m going to georgia unless I blossum into a 5 star recruit and get offered by a lot of other schools is what i read between the lines
I really hope i am wrong

npgator

April 23rd, 2010
10:46 am

He could be just playing them to get back at them for making his parents leave for wearing Orange and Black.

Typical Dawg Speak

April 23rd, 2010
10:50 am

Hmmmm…. Don’t be too suprised if Mom winds up with a house in Athens and a job on campus.

DP

April 23rd, 2010
10:54 am

Pretty interesting. One brother was offered by Alabama but not Georgia, the other is now offered by Georgia but not Alabama. Alabama is going to have a pretty small recruiting class this year (something like 17-18) and is already up to 8 or 9 commitments with a lot of outstanding offers to top players. They had a lot of DB/athletes in the last couple of recruiting classes, so I doubt they’ll be offering Devin. That’s no reflection on his talent, just that you only have so many scholarships. Good luck to him at Georgia.

cantondawg

April 23rd, 2010
11:06 am

JB,

You say that when a recruit chooses another school that Richt acts like a gentleman and backs off. What makes you say that? That’s as far from the truth as you could be. Richt continued to pursue Blake Simes. Michael Beasley, Matt Elam , Tevin Smith and alot of other recruits last year even after they had committed to other schools. Perhaps you should get your facts straight before you post something.

dale

April 23rd, 2010
11:08 am

Hooray! A tall corner.

The General Feeling

April 23rd, 2010
11:16 am

Chip, did you “gloss over” the real story on Adarius Bowman? I’m not sure it matters… but let’s hope the younger Bowman’s play out much better…for their Momma’s sake.

Dave In Tampa

April 23rd, 2010
11:21 am

I have to agree with jbeggs. If he is still planning on going for other visits then he is not 100% committed. Other than that he seems like a good kid. I just would not put this one in the books yet. I think Bama will end up with him.

Da truth

April 23rd, 2010
11:21 am

one went to OSU, one to Bama, and one may go to GA. Busy parents!! God bless them for letting the kids go their own way.

James T. Kirk

April 23rd, 2010
11:24 am

If Coach Johnson wanted this kid, he’d have him. Get used to it.

Dave In Tampa

April 23rd, 2010
11:26 am

I was not aware of the incident with his parents at the OSU game. Now if they were there on UGA’s dime then they should not have have wore their colors. However, making them leave is a bit much. Just my opinion AND I hope I’m wrong about my guy feeling. I hope he is 100% committed!
GO DAWGS!

Charles

April 23rd, 2010
11:39 am

It’s humorous to see the explicit intent to show that Bama did not offer Devin, yet you act like Michael chose Bama over Georgia due to an incident with the parents, when in reality he just didn’t have an offer – he was dying to go to Georgia. Pretty weak sauce. Either uninformed or agenda-driven, neither of which exactly screams big-time journalist.

BuzzGT

April 23rd, 2010
11:52 am

Great story. I am sure that his parents are proud to have three boys playing division I football. The only downside is having to buy gear from 3 different schools.

Joke

April 23rd, 2010
12:02 pm

This is a joke! This kid is the same one who pulled down the shorts of an player on the opposing team this year in a basketball game. He simply “shanked” the kid by jerking his pants down at midcourt during freethrow attempts and then laughed about it. Poor character kid! I am a bulldawg but this kid is a huge mistake.

BigTimeTECHFan

April 23rd, 2010
12:04 pm

Oh man her son played for Ok St and they would not let her wear those colors in their seats. How lame is that, wonder who made that call. Funny thing is she left.

But good for Devin, good luck, just don’t beat Tech.

Reality

April 23rd, 2010
12:10 pm

Every year, so much talent heads to Athens.

Remind me again, how many uga players went in the first round last night?

I thought so.

Reality

April 23rd, 2010
12:11 pm

Let the excuses begin….

Dr. J

April 23rd, 2010
12:36 pm

Tech campus must be too dangerous for him…

DAWGFAN

April 23rd, 2010
12:40 pm

Reality-

A lot of talent does go to UGA every year. The good thing for UGA is we are bringing quite a few great players back this year. I seem to remember at least two players from UGA going in the first round not to long ago and wasnt one the first pick in the draft? If you look UGA is in the short list of schools that put players in the NFL. So the Reality speaks for itself doesnt it???? Who is your school or did you go to school?

REALITY

April 23rd, 2010
12:43 pm

I went to Agnus Scott College…. We beat GT last year

RayDawg

April 23rd, 2010
12:53 pm

now I’m going to Georgia but I am going to take a few visits. Doesn’t sound like a solid commit.

gtnate

April 23rd, 2010
1:58 pm

That is pure class uga fans, telling the Bowman’s they had to leave there seats because they were wearing there other son’s jersey. That kid has to be a moron to go to uga after that. He should fit right in.

Reality Yech

April 23rd, 2010
2:16 pm

Since UGA has had the most first round draft picks over the past 10 years out of any program in the country, we don’t really feel the need to pleasure ourselves when it does happen, because it’s a common occurrence. But speaking of 1st rounders, I thought you guys were supposed to have 4 go last night? UGA had 2 guys taken off the board this time last year before Tech even had their first taken last night. That has to suck.

stan

April 23rd, 2010
2:18 pm

maybe if Yech would have offered him some free cokes, hot dogs and PlayGirls he would have been a Jacket.

Flo-Ri-Duh!

April 23rd, 2010
2:28 pm

These recruits take visits because it is paid for and they are wined and dined …. and in the case of Tick Hound “U” they get “hostesses”. I would suggest to Devin to skip all of that and concentrate on his senior year.