Even after selecting two defensive tackles on Day 2 of the NFL draft, Chicago Bears regular supervisor Ryan Poles couldn’t resist the possibility to scoop up a third.
There was an extreme quantity of about Travis Bell’s make-up and hustle that drew Poles to the participant, so the Bears chosen him inside the seventh spherical with the No. 218 select, together with a developmental participant from the FCS diploma to the place group.
“That is in all probability one in all my favourite human beings,” Poles talked about of the Kennesaw State product. “He’s a particular particular person. I didn’t need him to go away after his 30 go to and he didn’t wish to go away both. There’s one thing totally different about this man. He’s passionate concerning the recreation.”
Kennesaw State coach Brian Bohannon described the identical affinity for Bell and what he meant to the varsity’s program. Bohannon spoke to the Tribune in regards to the defensive kind out’s enchancment and prospects for an professional occupation. Right here’s that interview, edited for readability.
Be aware: This is part of a group of conversations with the school place coaches of this yr’s Bears draft picks.
How did Travis get in your radar?
Travis obtained right here out of significantly the inner-city of Montgomery, Ala. Travis shouldn’t be basically height-wise (6-foot) going to wow you, and he carried out a great deal of completely totally different positions in highschool and we spend a great deal of time over there recruiting. Certainly one of his coaches launched him over proper right here sometime and we’ve been ready to get in on him and felt like Travis may very well be a wonderful match for us. You seen a great deal of functionality, nevertheless clearly he’s a lot completely totally different leaving proper right here than when he was arriving proper right here.
How did Travis get going as quickly as he was on this system?
He was actually redshirted his first yr. He was on the offensive self-discipline with me your complete time as part of the defensive scout group. And you may even see the flexibleness. He merely wasn’t in a position to play. Put it this trend, you got a raw little one who hadn’t been in any building and hadn’t been in an setting like this, and it took barely bit for him to get used to it. He struggled with it at cases and it merely took a short while for him to control. We felt like he had a possibility to be a wonderful participant.
What does it say about Travis having a job whereas he was in school and part of your program?
I don’t suppose Travis had the job (for a medical present agency) your complete time he was proper right here. It was inside the last maybe yr or two. Travis already had his diploma proper right here. These kids purchased a COVID yr and he was in his sixth yr of being proper right here. Once I say Travis didn’t come from lots, he was most likely working to ship almost all of his a reimbursement dwelling. I in no way truly requested him notably, nevertheless I imagine he was sending most of his money dwelling. That’s merely the kind of little one he was. He was merely going to do that for the oldsters he cared about.
At what degree did you get an inkling that Travis may very well be on the NFL’s radar?
Rapidly points started to click on on for him and he figured it out. I felt like he had a possibility on the following diploma. I didn’t truly know what that meant on account of magnificence is inside the eye of the beholder usually. You don’t know what the people are seeing. We felt like we had a shot.
His stock rose this earlier season. The Cincinnati sport this season was big for him. That merely put him at a spot the place they get a larger thought evaluating him. After which his skilled day, he killed it. Every thing started together with as a lot as say not solely did we actually really feel assured he was going to get picked up, but it surely certainly purchased to some extent the place we felt he was going to be drafted. I don’t suppose we completely know the impression he made with the Bears. We all know who he’s, nevertheless we didn’t know the small print of his go to there. I listened to your complete data conference the Bears had with the GM and the top coach and Travis’ story is superior. Child comes from nothing, goes by a great deal of trials and tribulations, will get his diploma and really purchased drafted. You’re hitting every button correct now. It’s almost nearly as good a story as you probably can have. However I imagine on prime of that, culturally the place Travis comes from and the problems we do proper right here, it’s an superior match for what the Bears attempt to confirm. Listening to them, there’s a great deal of similarities in what they’re making an attempt to do of their group and what we’re making an attempt to do proper right here. It appears like it’s a truly good match. They discuss HITS there and we’re saying EAT — effort, perspective and toughness. Simply watching this little one develop and develop and bear some sturdy cases and the entire stuff that went with it and to see the place he’s at within the current day. Even when he doesn’t make it, it’s an excellent story.
Are you able to quantify what Travis meant to you and your program?
Early on, there have been some sturdy days. There have been most likely conversations the place it had gotten to some extent he wasn’t optimistic he was going to make it and I wasn’t optimistic he was going to make it. After which to indicate the nook and to totally change the trajectory of the place he was going that he grew to turn into a frontrunner on a bunch, he grew to turn into the person all people would kind of go to and be all ears to. Travis was not always a vocal man. Turned a vocal man and that was polar reverse from when he started to the place he accomplished. We did a consider camp the place guys would stand up in entrance of the room they normally have been requested to name two or three guys on the group they should go to battle with and trusted. I wager his title obtained right here up with every little one on the group. For all the reasons you want too. He’s basically probably the most humble, nicest man on the planet until he’ll get between the white traces. There’s a change that flips. Totally different man. Unbelievable.