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Five-star defensive end Malik McDowell goes against parents’ wishes and commits to Michigan State

Sam Cooper
Dr. Saturday

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Malik McDowell - Rivals photo

One of the more closely-monitored signing day ceremonies was that of Malik McDowell.

McDowell, a five-star defensive end from Southfield (Mich.) High School, pledged his commitment to Michigan State Wednesday morning despite his parents saying publicly that they did not want their son to play for the Spartans.

The 6-foot-6, 292-pound McDowell had narrowed his choices down to Michigan State, Michigan, Florida State and Ohio State, but in a recent interview with Rivals he said he felt most comfortable with the Spartans.

“I like a lot about the Spartans. I like Coach (Dantonio), Coach (Pat) Narduzzi and Coach Burton a lot, and Coach (Terry) Samuel too. Just the team atmosphere, I like the school atmosphere. Just the overall school, pretty much,” McDowell told Rivals.

His parents were not on board, however.

“We don’t want him at MSU,” McDowell’s mother, Joya Crowe, told the Detroit Free Press earlier this week. “Something happened, I don’t want to put it out there what it was, but I had a bad experience at MSU.”

McDowell’s father Greg also added that they feared that McDowell would have “too much social life” at Michigan State and they wanted their son to play out of state.

Ultimately, it was McDowell’s decision to make, and the No. 26 rated player in the nation decided to play for Mark Dantonio and the Spartans.

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