A WALK WITH A HAWK ... FEATURING: DOMINIQUE COWELL
Nov. 28, 2012
PRINCESS ANNE, Md. - There are many things that people know about Dominique Cowell. He has a great voice and is a well-rounded artist. He is a well-liked student-athlete at the school and is a fan favorite on the men's basketball team. He is funny, energetic and friendly.
What many do not know is how a 5'6 guard found a spot on a Division I basketball roster.
When watching him on the court, one can see that it's not his size that got him there.
It's his heart.
While a lot of Division I basketball players have made the team based upon their height, it's the size of Cowell's heart that has found him a roster spot in Princess Anne. The 5'6 guard has captivated the crowd in his first year through intensity and a never-say-die attitude. Although being more than six inches shorter than the average Division I point guard, Cowell finds a way to distinguish himself.
"I'm 5'6 and basketball is a big man's game," said Cowell. "It doesn't matter because I will still come out on top."
Cowell did not wait long to make a statement at UMES. In the Hawks' opening game of the season, he spearheaded a strong second-half charge against Hawai'i. Cowell played solid defense and forced several opposing turnovers as UMES went on a 9-0 run to cut its deficit to just eight with one minute to play. He finished the match with 22 minutes, four assists and two steals.
He began the season coming off the bench, but has already moved into the starting lineup. Cowell has started the past two games for the Hawks and stands fourth on the team in minutes-per-game (25.2). He has the best assist-to-turnover ratio on the team (14-to-10) and is second on the team in steals (nine). He is the biggest and most pleasant surprise for the Hawks of the 2012-13 season.
This year is actually Cowell's second at UMES. He spent the majority of last year as a spectator in the crowd, where he served as one of the Hawks' biggest fans. Despite not being on the court, he never gave up on his dream of playing Division I basketball. He earned a spot on the squad this season, a decision that has paid off well for both sides.
He did not give up on UMES and now it is evident, UMES did not give up on him.
"UMES was the school that I loved the most coming out of high school," said Cowell. "I went with my heart. It felt like a family here when I came."
His resiliency to overcome adversity was developed as a youth. Cowell dealt with an injury during his senior year at Bethel High School (Va.) that forced him to miss a substantial amount of time on the court. It also hurt his worth to many college basketball programs.
He has always had to work hard to overcome his height, but it has not been a battle he has had to fight alone.
"My family is my biggest motivation," said Cowell. "They know I have greatness in me, even if nobody else sees it. God and my family believe in me. That is my motivation."
Perhaps the best thing about Cowell is his ability to stare adversity in the face. He is a dreamer; a person that is not afraid to set goals and go after them with all of his heart.
"Success is all about working hard," said Cowell. "It's about getting to the highest level that you can. I'm never going to stop."
In the future, he sees himself either playing basketball or being a big-time singer. Cowell also aspires to work with art, as he is a very good and creative painter.
Whatever avenue Cowell decides to pursue, it is sure that he will go after it with all of his heart. In his short time at UMES, he has already won over the hearts of many Hawk fans. His story shows that the underdog can be victorious.
It may seem like Cowell looks up to many of his opponents and teammates, but in reality it is those that are actually looking up at him.
PREVIOUS WALK WITH A HAWK SEGMENTS:
For complete recaps, results and news of Hawk athletics, please visit www.umeshawks.com