YPSILANTI, Mich. —- What appeared as an act of disregard to any program in reality became a life lesson given by Eastern Michigan University basketball coach Charles Ramsey and the message to his power forward and all-conference player Brandon Bowdry – the team comes first beyond personal goals.
Ramsey move is trying to right the ship in a difficult environment, losing Sunday afternoon at Western Michigan University 65-48, proved to Bowdry that the Eagles can win with him but they also can lose too with him, it was not an injury or personal family problem, it was an off-court issue that had him hurting his team.
Ramsey swallowed back his pride and placed his own desire on the table and stepped up to be more than a basketball coach, he also became a teacher after Bowdry’s outburst of emotion after Eastern Michigan University dropped a 71-69 contest at home against Northern Illinois University.
Bowdry is the emotional leader for the Eagles and he provides the team’s personality and everything about the Eagles revolves around Bowdry; he has started 28 times out of 34 games and is one of three seniors on the roster which Ramsey is looking for some floor leadership from those three seniors.
This season Bowdry is averaging 21 points and 10 rebounds, he is second in the Mid-American Conference in scoring and is leading the league in rebounds but learning the lesson that Ramsey says is important to him and to the program is- Bowdry’s conduct cannot be detrimental to his team and made the loss to the Broncos a bitter lesson to learn.
“We suspended (Brandon) Bowdry for one game for conduct detrimental to our team,” Ramsey said. “We expect Brandon to learn from this experience and turn it into a positive one when he returns to the lineup.”
Moving forward because like the tide of the oceans, the Mid-American Conference schedule keeps rolling along and next on the schedule for the Eagles is a visit to the Convocation Center, Wednesday night by Ball State University with the tip off scheduled for 7 p.m.
The Cardinals are one of just three league teams that have a winning record and is the only undefeated team left in the conference.
Bowdry will be stepping out onto the court with some excitement and will take his offense inside into the Cardinal defense providing a challenge for Ball State University big men Jerrod Jones and Malik Perry.
Even though the Cardinals are undefeated, Central Michigan University has provided some answers to the rest of the league on how to defends and play the Cardinals.
Eastern Michigan University will have to pack the defense around Jones and denied him any good looks at the basket and challenge his shot.
Jones recently moved into 12th place on Ball State’s career rebounding list. He also is on the verge of surpassing 1,000 career points. He needs just 47 points to become the 25th player in school history to reach that mark.
Ramsey will be mixing in the 2-2-1 zone press and try to force the Cardinal’s guards into committing mistakes and turnovers, against the Chippewa, Ball State made 21 turnovers – a season high.
“Coach said just push the ball, so the defense can be confused,” Ball State guard Tyrae Robinson said after the Central Michigan University game. “Just push the ball, lead it out to one of our runners Jessie (Berry) or Jauwan (Scaife) and make things change.”
Ramsey offense philosophy is getting everybody on the bench involved in the game this is a two prong idea – it gives the younger players valuable playing experience and it provides a chance for the defense to play a more aggressive style because there are more fouls to give but lately the points provided by the bench role is diminishing because of poor shot execution.
Ramsey is a dedicated coach and he is respected by his peers and by his players, as a coach he is wanting the best for his players and for the program at Eastern Michigan University. He too shows that he has an emotional side and he sometimes sounds like he is going to blister the paint and the varnish off of the floor and walls.
He paces the sidelines and leers at his players on the court and directs his team with a passion that is reflected by his players on the court and sometimes it boils over off-court too – it is a contagious.
Ramsey said after the lost to Western Michigan University Sunday afternoon playing well is great but in this league it is all about result and against Ball State University, Wednesday night if the result is a win it would support the lesson.
About the Author
Written by Mel Suiter
Graduated from Eastern Michigan University in 2002 and have been working as a beat writer for The Ypsilanti Courier covering Eastern Michigan University football and men's basketball during my school career and after graduation. I like the Mid-American Conference and the rest of the mid-major conferences.