When you think southwest Oklahoma basketball, one of the more prominent names to come to mind is DeAnthony Bowden. Bowden helped bring Lawton-Fort Sill three championships as part of the Cavalry semi-pro basketball team before it disbanded in 2011. But for him, he was also able to make an imprint on the youth of the community.
"We brought a lot of championships here. We had a lot of success here. And it carried over into the high schools,” Bowden said. “You'd be surprised how many young kids actually watched us when we were here playing. The things we did just in the community itself, in bringing those kids out and having them come to games. Signing autographs and just talking to them period."
Today, Bowden has gone from being called a player to being called coach. He is currently in his first year heading the Lawton Christian basketball team and has led the team to a 9-1 record thus far. He recognizes it's his days as a player that have helped the 2015 crusaders develop and buy in to his coaching methods.
"If you've been there, then you can tell them some things about it and they can go online and Google it and learn a little about you,” he said. “So it's been good. I've had nothing but great responses. The kids have been excellent and the school has been great as well."
"He use to play point guard when he played in the CBA. And I get to learn a lot from him. I get to pick from his brain and learn the point guard position," said senior Tadarian Thompson.
Bowden also runs an acceleration program for youths looking to better improve themselves during the offseason. With the success of his program his new position of head coach, he says he is fulfilling a personal dream of helping young basketball players fulfill theirs.
"When you show these kids that, hey, if you put the hard work in and you stay determined to what you want to do, you can achieve these dreams. And my thing is, why can't it happen here in Lawton? I mean you have some good basketball players that come through Lawton. They deserve it,” he said. “That's what I'm here for. I want to create opportunities for these kids and let them know that their dreams can be lived out through Lawton."