While there are some statistical oddities connected with Maryland early this season —- like Greivis Vasquez ranking fourth on the roster in scoring —- there are other more pronounced issues.
Junior guard Adrian Bowie is struggling across the board. His scoring is down nearly two-thirds. His rebounding is down about 75 percent. And his shooting has plummeted from 45.3 percent to 30.8 percent.
Much was made of Bowie’s improved shooting, and the time he invested over the summer to make himself more dangerous on the perimeter.
The early returns aren’t encouraging; after a 13-for-58 effort from 3-point range last year, Bowie is 1-for-12 in the first six games this season.
“It’s just a matter of time before his shots start falling,” senior forward Landon Milbourne said. “It’s like that with anybody. When you’re adding something new to your game, it’s only a matter of time before it comes out and can be positive. He’s a good shooter, he’s a good driver and he’s a good player. It’s only a matter of time before he starts producing like he used to.”
In the two losses in Maui, Bowie effectively fell back to being used as Maryland’s fifth guard. He played 13 minutes against Cincinnati and six minutes against Wisconsin, and managed one point (with an 0-for-4 performance from the floor) in those two games.
(By comparison, Bowie played as little as 13 minutes just twice all of last season —- a one-minute cameo when he was ill at Georgia Tech, and 13 minutes when both Eric Hayes and Sean Mosley were playing well against N.C. State in the ACC tournament).
Coach Gary Williams didn’t seem too concerned, acknowledging that Bowie is probably pressing a little bit early in the season. And while Bowie did try to improve his shooting in the offseason, Williams wants the guard to realize there’s other things he already did to help Maryland win last season.
“He’s going to get his opportunity,” Williams said. “He has to play. The thing with Adrian is just stay aggressive. I think sometimes Adrian has a tendency to judge everything based on whether a jump shot goes in or not. That’s just one part of the game. He’s too good. He does too many things, athletically, quickness-wise, getting to the rim. All those things are his strengths. I’m trying to get him to focus on what he does really well and everything else will fall into place.”
—- Patrick Stevens