Three weeks after taking in Maryland for the first time, DMV linebacker Marcus Bowman (Frederick Douglass/Upper Marlboro, Md.) made it back to campus for Maryland’s spring game April 16. During his first stay, Bowman had a chance to see a practice, tour the campus, check out the facility-upgrade video, view the renovated dorms and chat briefly with a few coaches.
On this occasion, however, the 6-foot-3, 225-pounder saw the offense and defense go at it, had a more thorough sitdown with linebackers’ coach Matt Barnes, and learned about the school’s academics.
“The main thing different about this visit was meeting with Coach Barnes and going into his office to talk,” said Bowman, who holds offers from UMD, Syracuse, NC State, Temple, Iowa and Marshall. “Coach Barnes had me in there and was showing me footage of a player he coached before who made it to the NFL. He said we both played with a similar style, which is why [Barnes] is excited about me. I felt kind of special when I he said that. It made me feel good.
“But Coach Barnes, he just said he really likes how I attack, the angles I take, and how physical I am. He said they like me as an outside linebacker, but could drop down and play defensive end in some packages, which I liked because that’s what I do at Douglass. “
The Douglass product said he spoke briefly to head coach D.J. Durkin too. He was unable to touch base with his area-recruiter, Aazaar Abdul-Rahim, however, although Bowman noted the two have “a real good relationship.”
“Coach Durkin was busy with getting ready for the spring game, so we kind of just shook hands and talked for a second,” Bowman said. “I’ve talked to him before, though. He’s a cool guy and energetic. I like him.”
As for the game itself, Bowman said he was impressed by the defense. He liked how the linebackers attacked, filled gaps and were around the football.
“The defense was fast paced and up-tempo, and that’s how I like to play,” Bowman said. “I was watching Coach Barnes with the linebackers, and he’s a good coach. He reminds me of my coaches at Douglass with how he teaches different techniques. I liked him a lot.”
Before leaving campus, Bowman, whose mother joined him later during the visit, spoke to a few academic advisors. He learned about the various majors and the support system at UMD.
“I like what Maryland has to offer in terms of majors and how they help you find the right fit. That was big for me,” Bowman said. “I like how they help you with tutors and things like that too.”
Bowman, of course, was around close to 100 other recruits April 16, including several current Terps’ commits. Naturally, he heard plenty about DMV-to-UMD and the stay-home movement.
“Coach Aazaar and those guys, they all talk about that, and it’s a good idea, staying home at your hometown school,” Bowman said. “But to me it really doesn’t matter. I’m going to do my own thing. It doesn’t really matter to me who goes to school with me.”
Previously, Bowman praised UMD’s $150 million facility upgrades and the upgraded player dorms, not to mention the campus itself. Couple that with Bowman’s affinity for Barnes, Abdul-Rahim and the UMD defense, and he has the local institution sitting pretty.
“Maryland is high for me right now – my No. 1. My top school,” Bowman said. “But Syracuse and N.C. State are there too, and I still have to see them yet. I want to get up to Syracuse this summer and then NC State around then too. I’m trying to see Iowa if I can.
“I’m not committing until the end of my senior year, though. I want to see what else comes in. I’m going to wait things out.”
But if the Maryland staff were to push for a commitment sooner . . .
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“I’m still going to wait,” said Bowman, who believes Rutgers and ODU will ante up next . “It seems like the Maryland coaches are pushing for me; they said I’m one of the top people on their board. I have no idea if they’d take me right now or not, but it really doesn’t matter because I’m not ready to commit yet anyway. I want to see what else comes in.”