McDowell Still on Board with Clemson?

CUTigers.com checks in with Sumter running back Rod McDowell to see if he is still on board with his commitment to Clemson University.

RB Roderick McDowell Profile

Monday night Rod McDowell, the No. 1 running back in South Carolina and a current Clemson verbal commitment, found out his good friend, Ben Axon, had switched his commitment from Clemson to South Carolina in a story first reported on Scout.com.

"I just found out about it. He just got through texting me," he told CUTigers.com. "I just got off the phone with him a couple of minutes ago.

"He said he didn't know what was going to happen with the coaching staff. I told him to have fun and make sure it is the right decision for him."

The commitment change by Ben leaves the Sumter standout as the Tigers only running back verbal commitment for 2009.

"It is pretty good knowing I am the only one coming in right now," McDowell said. "I am sure they may go after someone else now. But Ben was like my brother. We kept in touch all the time. We shared our stats each week.

"If I had a bad week he would pick me up. If he had one I would try to pick him up. The recruiting game is crazy. As long as you are satisfied with your decision that is all that matters."

McDowell, like several other Clemson commitments, was on hand for the Georgia Tech game Saturday and also took in Clemson's new "Tiger Walk."

"It was phenomenal," he said. "That Tiger Walk was like nothing I have ever experienced. Clemson has been reenergized. Even though they didn't win they played with heart. They showed that there is still something in Tigertown."

While in Death Valley, Rod spent a lot of time with good friends J.K. Jay and Malliciah Goodman.

"We said we have to stick together. During our class a lot of stuff has happened," he said. "We need to show people that even though all that has happened we can still go out and have fun no matter what. We are all going to stick firm with Clemson."

Does the Palmetto state standout still consider himself firm with Clemson?

"Yes I am still committed to Clemson. I am going to see what is out there. That is it," replied McDowell.

Not surprisingly, South Carolina has been working hard to convince the star running back to give them a look.

"I really don't know where else I am going to look," he said. "I am going to see how things settle down. South Carolina has been calling a lot since coach Bowden left.

"Carolina said they would recruit me hard, but now I know they have a great playmaker in Ben. I am not sure how Ben going there may change things. I want to see how they interact now.

"I feel like I made the right choice with going to Clemson. I am still committed to Clemson. I am still a Tiger. I am a Tiger till I die. But I am going to look around. It is my senior year and you should have fun no matter what."

Friday night McDowell helped lead Sumter over West Florence and fellow Clemson commit Malliciah Goodman.

"It was phenomenal. Our offense blocked wonderful," he said. "West Florence has some great athletes. Goodman is my man. We came out knowing what we had to do. The coaches put the ball in the hands of the playmakers. I had a 97 yard kickoff return. That gave us a good start. Overall I had 275 yards."

After the interview Rod sent a text message to CUTigers.com, with one final word for Clemson fans ...

"Tell the fans I'm a Tiger until I die," he wrote.

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