Brooks McKowen enters his fifth season as the head coach of the Peacock men's basketball program in 2017-18. McKowen came to Upper Iowa after spending the two years at Southwest Minnesota State University in Marshall, Minn.
McKowen is UIU's eighteenth men's basketball head coach in the program's 100 season history.
After leading the Peacocks to 16-14 record in this first season at the helm, McKowen improved in his second season, leading UIU to a 17-13 record. In year three, Upper Iowa finished with a 16-17 overall mark, and an 11-11 record in the NSIC. All three seasons UIU finished in the fourth position in the division, and won a first round NSIC Tournament game at home. 2016-17 was the best season in program history at the Division II level, setting a record with 22 wins. UIU reached the NSIC/Sanford Health Tournament Championship Game for the first time ever, and reached the NCAA Tournament for just the second time at the DII level. McKowen coached a pair of NSIC All-Conference performers in Joey Woods (2013-14 First Team) and Grant Lang (2014-15 Second Team), and in 2016-17 coached UIU's first ever NSIC Defensive Player of the Year in Jordan Hay. Hay also earned Second Team honors, while Carson Parker earned All-NSIC First Team honors.
Prior to coming to UIU, the Fairbank, Iowa native was the top assistant coach and recruiting coordinator with SMSU over the last two years as the Mustangs posted a 35-25 record overall with a 28-16 mark in the NSIC including a 19-win season in 2011-12. McKowen's first year on the job also included a second place finish in the NSIC, an NSIC tournament championship and an appearance in the NCAA tournament.
After averaging 35.8 points and 11.2 rebounds as a senior for Wapsie Valley Community High School, McKowen was named the state of Iowa's "Mr. Basketball" by the Iowa Newspaper Association in 2003. He graduated as the state's all-time leader in both points in a season (1,002 in 2003) and points in a career (2,831 from 2000-03); the two records have stood over the last decade.
McKowen signed a National Letter of Intent to the University of Northern Iowa to play for Greg McDermott, currently at Creighton, and Ben Jacobson, UNI's current coach. He was a four-year letter winner at point guard for Northern Iowa, helping lead the Panthers to three, 20-plus win seasons and three trips to the NCAA tournament. He was a three-time second team Academic All-Conference honoree and was also named first team Academic All-District in 2007. A member of the 2004 Missouri Valley Conference All-Freshman team, McKowen ended his career holding the school record for assists in a single-season, while ranking second all-time in assists and fourth all-time in games played. He scored 856 points in a Panther uniform.
Prior to joining the SMSU staff in Marshall, McKowen spent the 2010-11 season as an assistant coach at Des Moines Area Community College. At DMACC, he served as recruiting coordinator, and worked with player development, scouting and game preparation, and was also academic and camp coordinator. DMACC finished the season 23-8 and advanced to the region semifinals.
McKowen spent three seasons (2007-10) on the coaching staff at UNI following his graduation. He served as a graduate assistant coach in his first two seasons with the Panthers, before moving to video coordinator in his final season. In 2009-10, UNI advanced to the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA tournament.
McKowen is a 2007 graduate of UNI in physical education and earned his master's degree from UNI in 2009 with a degree in physical education and coaching.