It appears there won’t be a resolution to the Malik McDowell “situation at any point in the near future.
The five-star defensive end committed to Michigan State on National Signing Day but has not sent his National Letter of Intent to the university. As McDowell is under the age of 21, his custodial parent — in this case his mother, Joya Crowe — must sign off on the NLI; neither of McDowell’s parents want their son to play for the Spartans — the father has backed off that stance somewhat — which is preventing the defensive lineman from officially joining the MSU program.
In a conversation with Rivals.com, McDowell’s dad confirmed that unofficial visits to schools such as Florida State and Ohio State would likely be in the offing before a final decision is made. It’s believed the father would prefer to see his son play for the Buckeyes, while his mother, at least for the time being, seems to be of the mindset that any program other than the Spartans would be fine with her.
“I know he is open to taking some unofficials to Florida State and Ohio State,” Greg McDowell told the recruiting website. “We plan on doing some unofficials and see if he and his mom can resolve this. It’s possible she’ll be open to Michigan State as well, so we’ll have to see. …
“We plan on getting down to Florida State as soon as possible, and with Ohio State being a three-hour ride, we’ll drive over and sit down.”
The father also made sure to note that Michigan, the last of the four finalists, is still in the picture as well, with the site writing that “conversations are ongoing with all three finalists he did not pick on National Signing Day.”
Greg McDowell couldn’t make a prediction on when the situation would be resolved
“We have until April 1 to decide, so hopefully within the coming weeks we will have something,” the player’s dad said.
There is one option for Malik McDowell if neither parent is willing to sign off on the NLI. From the Detroit Free Press:
If it turns out McDowell can’t get his mother to sign the letter of intent, or either parent to sign the Big Ten tender, he can still enroll at MSU. After one day of classes, a prospect is no longer considered a prospect, Smith said – he or she is considered a student-athlete.
So McDowell could sign the Big Ten tender after one day of classes and he would not need the signature of either parent.
But that would mean McDowell would have to pay out of his own pocket if he wanted to enroll in summer classes before his freshman season. Many incoming MSU freshmen take summer classes and take part in offseason workouts with the team.