“I think Cim gives us a very strong physical presence,” Pearl said of Bowers, a native of Racine, Wisc., who transferred to Auburn from Chipola Junior College in Florida.
“I want to put the ball in Cinmeon’s hands away from the basket because I think he can take people one-on-one off the bounce,” Pearl said. “He can overpower people and he is a willing passer.
“We are going to get the ball to him on the block with angles because he can score down there,” the coach added. “Another thing we will do is get the ball to him facing because he can take the ball to the basket.”
Bowers will be a junior for the 2014-15 season and is expected to be a key player for the Tigers, who can use his size and strength.
“Right now I am still trying to figure out where everything is,” said Bowers, who enrolled at Auburn for the second summer academic session.
With a new rule in place this summer allowing eight hours of team practices a week, Pearl and his staff are getting a serious early look at their players.
“Basically, I am working on getting my conditioning right,” the six-foot-six Bowers said. “I weigh 270 and I am trying to get down to around 260. I am trying to get a little fat off. I am not a fat boy and I can move with my weight, but I want to slim down.”
Bowers pointed out he can normally drop pounds without much problem. “I just have to eat right he,” he said.
In his early practices as an Auburn Tiger the power forward has shown he is comfortable on offense whether he is playing inside near the basket or on the perimeter.
“I can put it on the floor, I can post up, I can make plays,” Bowers said. “Basically, I can play one (point guard) through five (center) and will do whatever Coach wants me to do.”
Bowers noted that Pearl’s team is starting to build chemistry this summer. “The players have welcomed me and they are like family,” the transfer pointed out. “Any time I need a ride they will come get me. We will also hang out and chill. Everybody is clicking and that is the main thing.”
Although it is very early in the team building process, Bowers predicted the Tigers will have a chance to be good this season “I think we can make it to the tournament,” he said. “I think we can make noise. Anything is possible.”
Cinmeon Bowers is shown at Monday's practice.
Bowers, who averaged 11.9 points and 8.9 rebounds last season at Chipola, pointed out he wants to establish himself on the boards in his first season playing SEC basketball.
“I want to lead the conference in rebounds,” he said. “I want to average 10-plus. The scoring will come. I am not worried about that. I like to pass, too, so I would also like to average at least five assists per game.”
Pearl noted that a key for power forward during the offseason is to continue to work on his outside play. “When we improve his jump shot and improve his range and he has to be guarded out there, that is going to be very helpful,” the coach said.