Former Tyler Lion Tyus Bowser hosts seventh annual football camp

TYLER, Texas (KLTV) – It’s a tradition that’s growing here in Tyler: the Tyus Bowser Football Camp. Oh, and it’s free.

Each year, Bowser and his volunteers put young athletes through drills to help them improve, not just in terms of physical fitness but also in terms of learning how to follow directions.

“I think all of that plays a role,” said Bowser, NFL free agent LB. “As a player, as a human being in general, you have to be able to hear. You have to be able to listen. You have to be able to take instructions and execute at the highest level, and that applies to all aspects of life, not just sports. But in your job, you have to listen to what your boss is telling you. You can’t just listen and hear it in one ear and out the other. You have to understand what he’s saying and then go out and execute it and do your job. That’s how you make your money, you get paid to provide for your family, and it’s the same for me: I have to do the same thing and I’m just trying to teach it to these kids.”

When he was their age, Bowser listened. Out of Tyler High School, he earned a scholarship to the University of Houston and was drafted in the second round by the Baltimore Ravens. He is currently a free agent and has no problem maintaining his enthusiasm for camp.

“I think it’s natural,” Bowser said. “You come home to a city that gives you so much, that has put so much into you, especially because my family is here. They’ve done everything and more for me. Coming back and being with the kids is natural for me because I was treated the same way growing up and I want to give the same to these kids.”

The children also recognize the importance of this opportunity.

“It means a lot to us because he can teach us things that we don’t know yet,” said Khaylinn Erskine, an All Saints athlete who attended the camp. “He can teach us things that he didn’t know and so it means a lot to us because we can learn it at a young age. We can look up to him.”

During the interview, Bowser’s mother Sonya came by to take photos with his aunt.

“What can I say, where do I start?” she said, hugging her son. “I am so proud of this young man. Through good times and bad, he has always been humble. He loves the children and always tries to give back, and I am so, so proud of him.”

It is this support that inspires in him the desire to continue working with young people and helping them to be the best they can be – not only on the field, but in life too.