Milford product Bowman already contributing at Delaware State

DOVER — David Bowman has always been undersized.

So he’s always carried the same attitude of trying to prove himself on a football field.

It’s the same attitude he carried into his freshman year at Delaware State University. And it is what has helped him become a starter already for the Hornet defense.

“I had the same mindset that I did when I was a freshman in high school,” Bowman said. “I wanted to come in here and give it my all. If the coaches play me, then I’m going to take that opportunity and do my best.”

Bowman, a Milford High product, is listed at 5-foot-6 on Delaware State’s roster, making him one of the three shortest players on the team.

His size doesn’t matter to coach Rod Milstead though. Milstead recruited the reigning high school state Defensive Player of the Year for a reason.

“David Bowman is a special young man,” Milstead said earlier this season. “We were very fortunate to get him. Some people will say he’s undersized, but you can’t judge him by his stature. You judge him by his heart and what you see on film.”

Bowman has played in every game for the DelState defense and is fifth on the team with 29 tackles. He recorded the Hornets’ first sack of the season on Saturday night in a 34-6 loss to Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference foe North Carolina A&T.

Bowman started the season playing as a nickelback but moved to free safety for the second half of Saturday’s game. That’s the position he played in high school at Milford.

The Hornets (0-5 overall, 0-2 MEAC) are still searching for Milstead’s first career victory. They travel to Howard for a 1 p.m. kickoff this Saturday.

Delaware State did play its best defensive game of the season last week against North Carolina A&T.

The Hornets allowed their lowest amount of points this year with 34. That number is made more impressive considering the fact the Aggies were ranked No. 11 in FCS.

“I think this game we did better on filling gaps,” Bowman said. “Everyone did a better job of playing their responsibility. We’re trusting each other as a team and it’s coming together.”

“The defense really stepped up,” Milstead said. “They made some big stops when we needed them.”

Penalties, penalties penalties

The improved defensive performance was wasted by a sluggish offensive due in large part to penalties.

The Hornets committed 13 penalties for 100 yards against the Aggies. They had five false start infractions called on them in the first half alone.

“When you play a team of that caliber you can’t make mistakes,” Milstead said. “We made way too many mental mistakes like false starts and things like that. That put us in a hole.

The offense couldn’t get going. We were good for four or five plays but then we’d stall out. Our immaturity really showed with the penalties.”

Eliminating the penalties will go a long way in helping the Hornets earn that first victory says Milstead.

“We’re getting better but we have to put a complete game together,” Milstead said. “We haven’t done that yet.”

Getting his kicks

Kicker Jose Romo-Martinez nailed a pair of field goals in the loss against North Carolina A&T.

His second field goal was from 49 yards out — a career-high. It was the third longest made field goal in Delaware State history.

The record is held by Jared Keating who made a 54-yarder in 2003.

Romo-Martinez also converted a kick from 38 yards on Saturday. He barely missed a 50-yarder before halftime as his attempt clanged off the crossbar.

Reach staff writer Tim Mastro at tmastro@newszap.com

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