Countdown to kickoff: Arlington Bowie Volunteers

Posted Sunday, Aug. 24, 2014  comments  Print Reprints

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Arlington Bowie

District 4-6A

Last season: 7-4 (5-2 in District 3-5A)

Key players: QB Tony James (5-9, 151), FS Niko Small (5-11, 170), OL Madison Akamnonu (6-5, 276), DB Greg Peace (5-7, 177), John Murphy (6-1, 190)

The big picture: Despite a 7-4 record and only two district losses, Arlington Bowie didn’t consider its football season much of a success last year. Head coach Danny DeArman said the Volunteers peaked too early and were not playing their best football when it mattered most, especially at the end of district play. The Volunteers then lost in the bi-district round against Southlake Carroll. This season, Bowie has the potential to make a stronger run through district play and into the playoffs, beginning with quarterback Tony James, a TCU commit. DeArman said 7-on-7 football was immensely beneficial for his offense, giving James time to hone in his throwing skills and build chemistry with his wide receivers. Last year, James split time with Keaton Perry, who only played some of the season due to a torn ACL. James threw for 574 yards and 11 touchdowns, completing 69 percent of his passes. James said he drew pride in the fact that he did not throw an interception last year and has made it a goal to keep that streak going this season. In front of James is the biggest offensive line DeArman has had since he’s been at Bowie, he said, featuring three players 6-foot-5, 275 pounds or larger. On defense, free safety Niko Small, another TCU commit, returns as the anchor. While the secondary is one of the better units in the area, DeArman said he would like to see the other inexperienced units progress this season.

Quotable: “It all boils down to you being hot when the playoffs hit. We don’t want to peak early. We don’t want to be on top of the world in game three or four and come to game nine and go from being a possible district champ and end up fourth in the district again. We’ve got to be hot whenever the playoffs hit.” — coach Danny DeArman

“I’ve come into this year knowing that I wanted to be a better quarterback, so I needed to focus on getting my arm strong and getting the receivers time and not have to rely on my legs as much this year. I want to be more of a pocket passer and be able to use my legs when I can.” — quarterback Tony James

Notable: Should they make the playoffs, it would be the first time Bowie travels to West Texas for a bi-district matchup since the 2010-11 season.

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