Brian Bowen II (born October 2, 1998) is an American professional basketball player for the Indiana Pacers of the National Basketball Association (NBA), on a two-way contract with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the NBA G League. He originally committed to play college basketball for the Louisville Cardinals but was suspended by the team after a national college basketball corruption scandal which alleged that his family accepted payments in exchange for him choosing to attend Louisville. He later tried to play for the South Carolina Gamecocks, but due to an NCAA ruling, he removed himself from college and the 2018 NBA Draft altogether. Nicknamed "Tugs", he was named a McDonald's All-American as a senior in high school in 2017.
Bowen at the 2017 McDonald's All-American game.
|No. 10 – Indiana Pacers|
|Born||October 2, 1998|
|Listed height||6 ft 7 in (2.01 m)|
|Listed weight||200 lb (91 kg)|
|NBA draft||2019 / Undrafted|
|2019–present||→Fort Wayne Mad Ants|
|Career highlights and awards|
High school careerEdit
Bowen played at Arthur Hill High School in Saginaw, Michigan, before transferring to La Lumiere School in La Porte, Indiana, in 2015. He had three points in the 2017 McDonald's All-American Boys Game. As a senior at La Lumiere, he had averaged 22 points per contest, while leading his team to a national championship at the Dick's Sporting Goods high school tournament. In the 2017 Jordan Brand Classic, he scored a game high 26 points, including 6-of-7 from beyond the arc, and was named co-MVP.
Bowen was the last five-star recruit in the class of 2017 to announce his college commitment. It was announced on June 3, 2017, that he would be enrolling at Louisville. He reportedly also had offers from Michigan State, Arizona, UCLA, Oregon, Texas, DePaul and Creighton on the table. In September 2017, a Federal Bureau of Investigation investigative report into a college basketball corruption scandal made an ostensibly anonymous reference to alleged payments to the family of a student-athlete named only as "Player-10" who was recruited by an institution named only as "University-6". That university was described in such a way that it could only have been the University of Louisville. Player-10's signing was reportedly announced on or about June 3, 2017, and Bowen was the only Louisville player whose signing was in fact announced on or about that day.
At the end of the summer, he enrolled in classes and began participating in preseason team activities as scheduled. On September 27, 2017, Louisville coach Rick Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich were placed on administrative leave, and eventually dismissed. On the same day, Bowen was also suspended from all team activities, but he continued to be enrolled in the school and he still had his scholarship. On November 3, 2017, Bowen was cleared by the FBI. On November 22, 2017, Louisville announced that Bowen will not play or practice for the team. Academically, he was still a student in good standing at the time. On January 10, 2018, University of South Carolina coach Frank Martin announced that Bowen had enrolled at the university and would join the Gamecocks' basketball program. The university anticipated that Bowen would have to sit out the next two semesters, due to NCAA transfer regulations, meaning he would be able to begin playing within January 2019. However, on April 18, 2018, Bowen announced his intentions on entering the 2018 NBA Draft, with him later being one of 69 players to enter that year's NBA Draft Combine. He would do so without hiring an agent, meaning he originally planned to return properly, but only if his confirmation on his transfer would be approved by the May 30 deadline. However, by that point in time, he had heard from the NCAA that he would have been forced to sit out for at least another season due to the combination of alleged benefits that were given to his family back when he committed to Louisville and his transfer soon afterward to South Carolina. As a result, he officially announced his entry for the 2018 NBA Draft that day instead of returning to college. However, on the June 11 international deadline, Bowen announced his withdrawal from the 2018 draft, which would allow him to either play in the NBA G League or overseas professionally before potentially returning in a future NBA Draft.
Sydney Kings (2018–2019)Edit
After withdrawing from the 2018 NBA draft during the final entry deadline, Bowen made the decision to forgo college and pursue a professional contract. On August 7, 2018, Bowen signed with the Sydney Kings of the Australian NBL. During the 2018–19 NBL season, he played in 30 games while averaging 6.3 points and 3.2 rebounds per game. At the season's end, Bowen became automatically eligible for the 2019 NBA draft.
Indiana Pacers (2019–present)Edit
- "Five-star guard Brian Bowen of Saginaw Arthur Hill transfers to La Lumiere (Ind.)". MLive.com. Retrieved 2017-07-06.
- "2017 McDonald's All-American Game box score". Arizona Daily Star. Retrieved 2017-07-06.
- "Louisville basketball lands Brian Bowen, its top-ranked commitment in nine years". kentucky. Retrieved 2017-07-06.
- Nathan, Alec. "Jordan Brand Classic 2017: Brian Bowen, Lonnie Walker Take Co-MVPs in Showcase". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 24 June 2019.
- "Scouting report: Louisville basketball pledge Brian Bowen". courier-journal.com.
- "Louisville lands surprise commitment from Brian Bowen, last five-star in 2017". CBSSports.com. Retrieved 2017-09-28.
- "University of Louisville college basketball program targeted in FBI investigation". The Courier-Journal. Retrieved 2017-09-28.
- "Freshman Brian Bowen removed from Louisville team activities". 247Sports. Retrieved 2017-09-28.
- "Louisville's Pitino and Jurich placed on leave". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2017-09-28.
- "FBI clears top Louisville recruit Brian Bowen in investigation". MSN. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
- "Brian Bowen, player tied to Rick Pitino's firing, will not play for Louisville". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2017-11-22.
- "Sources: Cardinals suspend Bowen indefinitely". espn.com.
- "NBA Draft 2018: Ex-Louisville recruit Brian Bowen enters NBA Draft but wants to play at South Carolina". CBSSports.com. Retrieved 2018-04-19.
- Givony, Jonathan. "Ex-Louisville, South Carolina commit Brian Bowen to play professionally in Australia". ESPN. Retrieved 24 June 2019.
- Givony, Jonathan. "NBA draft: 233 early-entry prospects declare for 2019". ESPN. Retrieved 24 June 2019.
- "Indiana Pacers Sign Bowen, Gant and Wilcox". NBA.com. July 1, 2019. Retrieved July 2, 2019.