Iowa State’s steadfast pursuit of Northern Illinois graduate transfer Darrell Bowie paid dividends Thursday when the soon-to-be fifth-year senior ended his recruitment with a phone call to coach Steve Prohm.
The Cyclones had made a strong push for the immediately eligible graduate transfer in the two weeks since he signed release papers, most recently Wednesday when Prohm and assistant T.J. Otzelberger first visited Bowie in DeKalb (Ill.) and then his family in Milwaukee.
Those visits were all Bowie needed.
“I got kind of tired of the recruiting process, really, answering all the calls and questions and everything over and over again. It just got kind of busy and hectic for me, especially with me trying to focus on graduating still,” Bowie said. “I liked how the meeting went yesterday and they met with my mom and dad and they enjoyed it and were excited about it. I talked with [my parents] last night and this morning and I called Coach P this morning and they were excited and fired up.”
Iowa State’s excitement is certainly warranted as the Cyclones land a 6-foot-7 forward to the 2016-17 roster, one that will lose three forwards in Georges Niang, Jameel McKay and Abdel Nader who have accounted for a good portion of the team’s points and nearly 20 rebounds per game this season.
Bowie, who has averaged 8.4 points and 5.4 rebounds per game in the last three seasons (in less than 25 minutes per game), sat out this season with a shoulder injury he sustained last January and had surgery for last March. Bowie decided in November to transfer and is now fully healthy.
Iowa State will combine Bowie with returning physical guard Deonte Burton and incoming JUCO transfer Emmanuel Malou in 2016-17. The Cyclones also return two youngsters at the position in Simeon Carter and Brady Ernst.
"They like my versatility a lot,” Bowie said. “They see how they can use me in their style of play and offense, so whatever coach needs me to do in a certain game [I’ll do]. If he wants me to go out there and rebound that game I’ll do that. If he wants me to go out there and play defense on a certain player I’ll do that. If he wants me to go some games and score [I’ll do that]. I’m just looking forward to everything moving forward with the process.”
Bowie also held offers from Marquette and Drake before committing while TCU, Creighton, Loyola (Chicago) and Nevada were frequently showing interest. Rather than pursue other options, Bowie decided Thursday he’d heard enough.
“I kind of caught [Prohm] at an awkward time because he was preparing film of Kansas. I kind of threw him off, but when he answered the phone he was already excited seeing me call. When I told him [I was committing] he was fired up more so,” Bowie said of his pledge Thursday. “It feels good because first of all I know where I’ll be living next year and I know what my next step in life will be.”
Bowie and Iowa State are still sorting out plans for him to visit campus, but likely won’t finalize them until after the regular season ends Saturday. Currently, the plan is for Bowie to be in Ames for Selection Sunday on March 13.
Until then, his recruitment is over.
“Them coming up again this week, especially on Wednesday in between [them having] a big game coming up and then after the [last] game, them trying to do all that in one day, that meant a lot to me,” Bowie said. “It just worked out.”