The tandem of Kenny Demens and Jonas Gray was a formidable duo during Detroit Country Day's march to the state title game last season. As good as they were, they would have been even better had wideout Bennie Fowler been there to help them the entire season.
"I didn't play my freshman or sophomore year because I came into high school wanting to be a basketball player," Fowler explained. "Then Jonas and Kenny brought me out four days before the first game of the season to see if I could do something. Last season turned out to be a good season. The first couple of game I played well. I scored a couple of touchdowns. Then on a punt return in the homecoming game I broke my collarbone. It was an 80-yard return where I went from sideline to sideline… and then I landed on it wrong. I sat out like eight or nine weeks. Then we made it to the semi-finals for state and I scored the game winning touchdown in that game. We went to the state finals and had seven or eight catches in that game. It probably one of my best games, but we ended up losing that one."
Fowler's end-of-year impact was enough to pique the curiosity of number of coaches, and now the recruiting fires are officially stoked.
"I wasn't being recruited back when I got that injury," recalled Fowler. "I started getting recruited after the season in February. Then I got offers from Indiana, Toledo, and Eastern Michigan. Now I have all of the Big Ten except Ohio State recruiting me. I've got Notre Dame and Tennessee too. I just went up to Michigan State's camp (last Friday) and ran a 4.36. They were saying that I fit in. They were saying that as the camp went on I got better and better. I got more comfortable. I didn't drop that many balls the whole camp. They offered me (Saturday) morning."
Shortly after he received word of his Michigan State offer, Fowler hopped in the car with his father so they could pay the University of Michigan a visit.
"It was good," Fowler said of his trip to Ann Arbor. "We got a chance to talk to Coach Dews and meet some of the coaches. They didn't offer me though."
"I know the coaches looked at the tape and said they were going to discuss it as a team and probably look at the tape a little bit further," Fowler's father added. "Coach Rodriguez wasn't there. We discussed when we would go back up there. With the schedules we had already laid out and the commitments that we had other places, it didn't appear that we were going to be able to do it with the two days they had left before they went on vacation. The way we left it was as soon as they got back, and it's legally possible… because they are going to follow all of the NCAA rules to the T and so will we… we would like to have some dialogue with Rodriguez."
A few other staffs will be on the receiving end of a little face time in the coming weeks. Afterward the youngster and his father will begin whittling down the list of fifteen schools he is currently considering.
"I'm going to Penn State, I go to Central Michigan (today), and Northwestern on July 23rd, Fowler reported. The school has got to be close to home, it has got to be somewhere where I can play, it's got to offer a good education, it's got to have a good coaching staff, and it's got to be a good school overall. Depending on (who offers), I'll probably decide in November or around there… sometime before basketball season starts so I know what's going on and everything."
GoBlueWolverine will have more on Fowler in the coming weeks.