When Dabo Swinney and Brent Venables arrived at Jesuit High School (Tampa, Fla.) on Thursday, it was because they were visiting a Clemson three-star linebacker commit in Wade Woodaz.
Or at least that’s what Troy Bowles thought.
After Clemson’s head coach and defensive coordinator/linebackers coach had left for the afternoon, that’s when the four-star linebacker prospect was informed by his head coach that Clemson had offered him a scholarship.
“I don’t even know,” Bowles told The Clemson Insider. “I was shocked because I had went up there during the summer for the [Dabo Swinney] Camp and they said they would keep in touch. I was shocked though.”
Clemson kept that promise and Bowles had been hearing from Venables weekly since Sept. 1.
“It means a lot because there’s a lot of coaches that will be like ‘We’ll keep in touch,’ and you never hear from them again,” Bowles said regarding his Clemson offer. “It just shows that their process is real.”
Bowles, who describes himself as “versatile and fun to watch,” is a fan of Clemson’s defensive scheme and how the Tigers utilize their linebackers.
“They have them do a lot of different things,” he said. “Coach Venables was talking to me about it when I was up there this summer.
It should come as no surprise to anyone who follows the NFL, but Bowles likes to model his game after that of a couple of linebackers who he happens to know personally, Lavonte David and Devin White.
His father, of course, is former New York Jets head coach and current Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive coordinator, Todd Bowles.
Todd takes a hands-off approach to his son’s recruitment as he looks for him to forge his own path.
“He wants me to feel everything out for myself, but he always tells me to keep an open mind to everything,” Troy said.
In terms of game day experiences, Troy was able to visit Ohio State, Georgia, Florida and Rutgers — his brother, Todd Bowles, Jr. plays for the Scarlet Knights.
He’s planning on making a return trip to The Valley for the first time since this past summer, but that’ll have to wait until the new year.
For now, Troy’s connection to Clemson is through Woodaz. While he’s only been committed to Clemson for a week, he’s already recruiting his high school teammate to follow him to Tiger Town.
“He told me [Thursday] he’s gonna recruit me even harder because I got the offer now,” Troy said. “[Our] relationship is close. We both started at Jesuit the same year. We’ve kind of been through the experience together, to be honest.”
As far as his recruitment is concerned, Troy is hoping to be committed before the start of his senior campaign. He currently ranks as high as the No. 38 overall prospect in the 2023 class by 247Sports, which considers him the No. 2 linebacker in the country for his class.