Try as she might to ignore it, Tori Bowie’s life will never be the same.
The former Southern Miss track star who won a gold, silver and bronze medal at the Rio Olympics has seen her profile balloon since August. From Adidas commercials to fashion modeling gigs, the Sand Hill native has become the toast of American sprinting.
On Friday, the trend continued for Bowie. Accompanied by friends and family, she was honored at Southern Miss — where she was a two-time NCAA champion in 2011. A pair of permanent signs dedicated to Bowie were unveiled at the Marshall Bell Track and Field Complex. Later, she took part in Eagle Walk and was honored at halftime of the Golden Eagles’ season finale against Louisiana Tech.
In addition, Southern Miss and the City of Hattiesburg declared Nov. 25 will forever be known as “Tori Bowie Day.” Bowie still marvels at the direction life has taken her.
“It’s special,” she said Friday. “Humbling, I should say. I’ve never even thought about anything like this. It’s like back in Sand Hill, they have a sign right when you turn inside (the campus at Pisgah High, her alma mater), they actually have a sign, it says ‘Tori Bowie Lane.’ To see things like that and like this, it’s just like miracles, I guess.
“Nothing I’ve ever dreamed of.”
The high-speed carousel Bowie finds herself on shows no signs of decelerating, either.
“What’s next for me?” she said. “I’m going back (to Florida) and I’ll continue my training. But I finally hired a publicist. So we’ll start working together in December.
“And I’m going to just try to get into more modeling and more acting. Just putting my face out there. That’s the goal for 2017.”