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Loudoun Valley alum Paul Rowley is a quick study at William & Mary

Paul Rowley, a redshirt sophomore at William & Mary, attempts a 3-pointer during a Nov. 23, 2016 game versus Duke University at famed Cameron Indoor Stadium. Rowley connected on 3 of 4 shots from 3-point range in 26 minutes of action.—Photo Courtesy/William & Mary athletics
Paul Rowley was preparing for his freshman year at William & Mary in the summer of 2014 when his father, Sean, began to work on a spreadsheet with his son’s schedule.

The Loudoun Valley High School academic and basketball standout was preparing to take 12 credit hours his first semester, which is typical for a basketball player for the NCAA Division I Tribe.

“I signed up for 12 credits and my dad said take 15 hours. I really didn’t want to do that,” said Rowley, who ranked third in his class in high school. “He put together a spreadsheet; it was kind of his brainchild.”

Rowley ended up taking 15 credits as a freshman in his first semester. And thanks to three years of summer classes, he is on track to graduate this spring as a double major in finance and computer science.

That is even more impressive when you consider that Rowley has been part of the basketball program for three years at William & Mary, who lost to No. 1 seed UNC-Wilmington March 4 in the Colonial Athletic Association tournament semifinals.

Rowley scored 11 points in just 14 minutes off the bench March 3 as the Tribe beat Elon 71-66 in the CAA quarterfinals. He scored nine points in 14 minutes during the semifinal loss.

Now Rowley has a decision to make.

Since he was a redshirt during the 2014-15 season, Rowley has played two seasons and has two more years of eligibility left for head coach Tony Shaver and the Tribe.

Rowley would be eligible to play at William & Mary next season, and the season after that, if he enters graduate school at the Williamsburg campus.

"That is kind of the plan. I have been looking into the different options,” he said. “I have been putting it on the back burner. I made a list of pros and cons. I don’t have any real interest in going anywhere but here.”

Rowley is interested in the business school. His sister attended law school at William & Mary after doing her undergraduate work at the University of South Carolina.

The Purcellville resident is a two-time William & Mary Provost Award winner, was named the school’s ‘Kraze’ award winner in 2015-16 and was part of the NABC Honors Court in 2015-16.

As a redshirt freshman in 2015-16, Rowley played in eight games. This past season as a redshirt sophomore, Rowley played in 31 games with nine starts and averaged 16 minutes and 5.4 points per contest.

Rowley attracted attention from several Ivy League and Patriot League basketball programs coming out of high school. That included Harvard and head coach Tommy Amaker, a graduate of W.T. Woodson High in Fairfax and a former Duke standout.

“The decision was based around [basketball] fit. Harvard was a top 25 team at the time,” said Rowley, whose college GPA is nearly 3.8. “They were definitely a good team. My style kind of fit [with the Tribe]. We do well with long wings that like to shoot a lot of threes and that is my MO.”

In high school, Rowley was rated the 10th-best player in the state of Virginia by Rivals.com and he was a first-team all-state player. Rowley averaged 20 points per contest for Loudoun Valley in 2013-14 and shot 80.7 percent from the foul line as a senior.

Off the court, he registered a perfect 800 on the math portion of the SAT and was a 2014 National Merit Scholarship semifinalist.

There is a good chance Rowley could see more playing time next season as the Tribe will lose two of their top players: seniors Omar Prewitt and Daniel Dixon.

“You won’t find a player who doesn’t want to play more. Everyone loves to be on the court,” Rowley said. “A large part of what I do for this team comes from leadership. I pride myself in becoming one of the leaders. I like to get guys going. Culture goes a long way. I kind of depend on other guys to get me my shot."

-Photos courtesy of William & Mary athletics


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