Commitment Spotlight: Nigel Bowden

Nigel Bowden, who gave Vanderbilt a verbal pledge in March, made the trip from Macon, Ga. to experience the Black and Gold spring game in person. The 6-foot, 235-pound inside linebacker came away impressed with what he witnessed especially with the 8,500 spectators on hand at Vanderbilt Stadium.


"It was great," Nigel Bowden stated. "You could really see how well the team is progressing. It was outstanding that so many people came out to show their support."

It was Bowden's first visit to Nashville since he gave his commitment to Coach Franklin in person at a Junior Day event last month.

"I loved how passionate Coach Franklin was about bringing up the program," said Bowden. "It's a close-knit team. I could tell by the way the players interact with one another how close they are, and I wanted to be a part of it.

"Nashville has a great community. You get a small campus feel in a big city. The education is excellent. I think they're ranked number one in the nation for music and number 17 in the nation overall. With football, they have a defense that's now ranked and moving up and being recognized in college football."

Both of Bowden's parents were with him when he made his commitment to the Commodore program. Bowden says they're making their new-found allegiance known in the Macon area.

"My parents went out and bought Vanderbilt shirts right away," Bowden said. "Everybody in the neighborhood came up and told me 'Congratulations'.

"I'm ready to get back to work. We start spring ball on May 7th. I spoke with Coach Pry last Wednesday, and they're supposed to be coming down to see me."

After going 2-8 in 2011, Macon-Central hired Jesse Hicks as the new football coach. Bowden says he's excited about the Chargers chances next season with Hicks at the helm.

"My goal is to win a state championship," Bowden said on his senior year. "I want to beat Westside. I also want to do everything I can to get my teammates more exposure and scholarship offers. They work just as hard as I do.

"Coach Hicks is making it happen here. He's brought in discipline which is what we needed. He has the players actively conditioning, sitting in front in the classroom, and making sure they get to school on time. He's already made a big difference. Some basketball and track guys have come back to the team. He's hoping to hire 11 assistant coaches, and that would be a huge boost for us."

Bowden says after his commitment to Vanderbilt he has received offers from Tennessee, Louisville, and Mississippi State.

Bowden didn't play any other sports this spring to concentrate on weight lifting and academics. He said he will receive an award next week for his outstanding work in his French class. In his spare time he enjoys making music in his garage with friends and hopes to study Music Theory when he gets to college.

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