If you listen to Wauwatosa East junior forward Darrell Bowie talk about it, you would have thought he had a disappointing basketball season.
Bowie was a first-team all-Greater Metro Conference choice after being honorable mention as a sophomore.
The 6-foot-6 inch big man led the team in scoring (297 points), points per game average (12.9), offensive rebounds (59/2.6), defensive rebounds (131/5.7), total rebounds (190/8.3), 2-point field goals (99), free throws made and attempted.
He also had 36 assists (1.6), 42 steals (1.8) and 29 blocks (1.3).
Bowie, who was a member of the Division 2 WBCA All-State squad, scored in double figures in 17 of 23 games (74%), hitting a season-high 24 points in the win over rival Wauwatosa West. He also scored 20 points in a win over Marquette and 20 points in a win over Brookfield East.
As a result, Bowie was selected to the NOW Newspapers 2010-11 All-Suburban Boys Basketball Team, one of 11 players to receive the honor.
But he still wasn't satisfied with his performance this year.
"No, I could have been better," Bowie said. "I needed to get my team more involved. I also could have stepped up during our scoring drought at times and been more dominant."
Tosa East coach Tim Arndorfer agrees Bowie can improve his game next year, but he saw progress during the season.
"I think he really took on more responsibility since he was the guy other teams focused on. As the season progressed, he was unselfish - which we needed him to be. We need to go to other people to score too. He learned to have trust in his teammates as the season went on."
With Bowie getting double and tripled team he became more of a distributor for the Red Raiders.
"I tried to get my team more involved," the soft-spoken junior post said. "When they double-teamed me, I had to kick it out to the perimeter; I knew my teammates had the confidence to knock down the shots.
"I had to be patient. There was a lot of pressure for me, especially with the final shot, but I had the confidence to pass to my team."
The talented Bowie had the ability to work inside, but he could also go to a wing and sink a job shot if needed.
"He's unique - his length and his athleticism - I'm not sure if he's a true post player just yet. He needs to work on his post moves in general.
"He can clean up the boards. He explodes with his second jump on missed baskets, putting the ball back in. I think if he continues to work on his jump shot, he can be more effective inside because he handles the ball well and has a decent first step, so he will be able to blow by some guys."
Brookfield Central coach Mark Adams already feels Bowie is a load to deal with.
"He is a tough matchup for most of us because of his size and wingspan," Adams said this week. "When he puts his mind to it he is very active around the basket and gets his hands on a lot of balls resulting in putbacks and a ton of free throws.
"I believe he attempted 16 free throws (actually 14 of 20) in our game at Tosa East."
When it comes to shooting, it was good news and bad news for Bowie. Good news: he shot 53% from the field. Bad news: he shot 53% from the free throw line.
"For his size, he has done remarkably well from the perimeter," Arndorfer said. "He blocks shots, but he has to be careful because sometimes that gets him gets in him in foul trouble."
One of the other areas Arndorfer looked to Bowie for was leadership, something that wasn't easy for him because of his quiet demeanor.
"We were definitely looking for a lot more leadership and growth as far as maturity," Arndorfer said. "Darrell made strides in that regard."
With only three seniors on the team, Bowie knew he would have to take on more of a leadership role.
"Leadership is very important to me, but I'm a quiet person," he said. "We had a lot of kids in my age group on the team, so Vince (Cupertino) and I talked about it. He talked a lot and I tried to do the same. It was kind of hard some time."
Bowie will play AAU ball with the Chicago Mean Street this year.
"They are like family," he said. "Derrick Rose played for him. Anthony Davis, one of the top college prospects, who signed with Kentucky, also played for them."
Bowie is already working on getting stronger for next season, spending time in the weight room. He has areas of his game that still need to improve.
"I working my on shooting, from the free throw line and my mid-range jumper," he said. "I need to build up my legs and upper body, my dribbling - I'm probably not going to be playing the post down the road."
Arndorfer brought up a scary point for Red Raiders opponents next year.
"If Darrell gets stronger," he said, "he will be more difficult to stop offensively."
WAUWATOSA WEST - The Trojans had three players make honorable mention honors on the NOW Newspapers 2010-11 Boys Basketball All-Suburban squad. Seniors Tyler Krause and Jarvis Ashley were high honorable mention choices and freshman Ricky Landers was an honorable mention selection.
WAUWATOSA EAST - The Red Raiders sophomore guard Anthony Carroll was an honorable mention selection.
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