Eleven things to know about Brian Bowen, the five-star basketball player who signed with South Carolina on Wednesday.
Bowen, who signed with Louisville in summer 2017, spent the fall semester enrolled at the school but did not play. Though not mentioned directly, Brown was later identified as the “unnamed player” that Adidas funneled $100,000 to at the request of a Louisville coach. The FBI alleges that Brian Bowen Sr., Brian Bowen’s father, accepted the money. U of L coach Rick Pitino was fired in the ordeal.
2. Enrolled at USC
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Bowen is enrolled at USC and is expected to begin practicing with the Gamecocks soon. Per NCAA rules, he must sit out two semesters before becoming eligible to play in games.
3. McDonald’s All-American
Bowen was a consensus top 20 recruit in the 2017 class. He chose Louisville over Michigan State, Arizona, UCLA and Oregon, among others. Bowen was one of 24 high school seniors to play in last year’s McDonald’s All-American game.
Bowen also played in last year’s Jordan Brand Classic, scoring 26 points and taking MVP honors for the East team.
5. Midwest roots
Bowen played at Arthur Hill High School in Saginaw, Michigan, before transferring to La Lumiere School in La Porte, Indiana, for his junior and senior seasons.
6. National champion
La Lumiere won the Dick’s Sporting Goods High School national championship last April in New York. Bowen had 15 points and seven rebounds in the title game win over Montverde Academy.
7. NBA blood
Bowen is cousins with former NBA guard Jason Richardson. Richardson was selected out of Michigan State fifth overall by the Golden State Warriors in 2001. He pro career lasted 14 seasons and included stints with the Warriors, Bobcats, Suns, Magic and 76ers.
8. Parade participant
When Richardson helped the Spartans to the 2000 NCAA championship, Bowen rode with his cousin in the title parade in East Lansing, Michigan.
Bowen, as seen on his social media accounts, goes by the nickname “Tugs.” Why Tugs? “When I was a baby, the doctor said I was pulling on her hair strong like a tug boat,” Bowen said. “Just from there, my parents shortened that to ‘Tugs.’ It stuck with me my whole life.”
10. Golden hair
Bowen has a unique hair style that’s modeled after New York Giants receiver Odell Beckham Jr.’s golden mane.
11. Dinner with LeBron
As a high school participant at the LeBron James Skills Academy, Bowen joined the future Hall of Famer for dinner. Because of connections to Richardson, Bowen has also hung with Dwyane Wade.