« Men’s Basketball 2015-16

Chris Fowler

School

Central Michigan

Position
Guard
Major
Theatre and Interpretation

Classroom

Chris excels in the classroom as well as on the court. Chris maintains a 3.42 cumulative grade point average as he pursues a degree in theatre and interpretation and a minor in leadership. Chris is a two-time Academic All-Mid-American Conference honoree, a three-time Academic All-America nominee and was named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Honors Court in 2015. He has also played a role in Central Michigan twice receiving the NABC Team Academic Excellence Award.

Character

Emblematic of his leadership abilities, his strength of character and his value to the program both as a player and a person, Chris has earned the rare honor of being named a team captain for all four years of his collegiate career. It was a career that almost didn’t happen, due to a serious knee injury he suffered in high school. Chris was forced to overcome that injury to not only gain notice and then a scholarship offer but, on an almost daily basis, has needed to work diligently on the court and in the training and weight rooms to maintain his health and fitness to remain in the starting line-up. He has done so with great success, as he has miraculously started all 94 games of his collegiate career, logging nearly 3,000 minutes of playing time heading into his senior year. Further testament to his will to persevere was his performance versus Bowling Green last season. Despite severely injuring his thumb early on, Chris remained in the game and went on to score a career-high 42 points, the fifth-largest single game total in the nation in 2014-15. Placing priority on his dedication to the team and his teammates, Chris decided decided to forego surgery until after the season in order to continue CMU’s historic run. He played with a brace on his dominant dribbling and shooting hand for the final 12 games, going on to earn All-MAC honors and lead CMU to its first postseason appearance since 2003.

Community

Chris routinely gives back to the Mount Pleasant community through his involvement in a variety of volunteer projects and charitable works. He serves as Leadership Chair of the Central Michigan basketball School Matters program, an initiative that centrally stresses the importance of staying in school but also aims to instill a love of knowledge, encourages children to be good friends, classmates and citizens, trumpets the benefits of being physically active and includes a strong anti-bullying message. He has worked with a local Special Olympics chapter, encouraging and instructing athletes as they take part in basketball drills. Chris has also volunteered with Meals on Wheels during the holidays, delivering food to at-risk seniors. Chris is a three-time nominee for the Allstate Good Works Team, an award that recognizes a distinguished group of student-athletes who have demonstrated a commitment to enriching the lives of others and contributing to the greater good in their communities. Chris was also recently honored as the 2015 recipient of Central Michigan’s prestigious Bill Boyden Award, an honor presented annually to the student-athlete who best exemplifies athletic success, leadership in campus activities, accomplishments in the art and community involvement.

Competition

A four-year starter, Chris is the Central Michigan program’s most impactful and decorated player in more than a decade. In 2014-15, Chris spearheaded one of college basketball’s largest turnarounds, as CMU went from 10 to 23 wins. He guided the Chippewas to a share of the MAC regular season championship, an outright MAC West Division title, the No. 1 seed in the MAC Tournament and a berth in the NIT. From his point guard position, he directed the nation’s No. 12-ranked scoring offense and No. 3 three-point shooting team. Chris led CMU in scoring for the second consecutive season (16.2 ppg) and finished first in the MAC and ranked 12th nationally in assists per game. For his standout junior season, he was named First Team All-MAC and NABC All-District, finished as the runner-up for MAC Player of the Year, was named to Lou Henson All-America Team and was a finalist for the Lou Henson National Player of the Year Award. He stands as the only player in program history to compile 1,000 points, 500 assists, 250 rebounds, 150 steals for a career. Heading into his senior season, among all active NCAA players, he ranks second in total assists and sixth in assists per game and assist/turnover ratio. Chris is already CMU’s all-time leader in assists, is ranked in the top 10 in scoring and is on pace to become the program leader in steals. He is widely considered the frontrunner for MAC Player of the Year honors in 2015-16.