A professor who invests in his students, Coach McDowell works with Olivet athletes as they train for and compete in cross country and track and field meets.
Before joining the Olivet team in 2001, he was head coach of the Moline (Ill.) Summer Track Club from 1979 to 1983, and assistant sprint coach at Augustana College (Ill.) from 1983 to 2001.
Coach McDowell has received several National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) coaching awards during his career, including CCAC Cross Country Men's Coach of the Year, 2008, 2009, and 2013; CCAC Outdoor Track and Field Men's & Women's Coach of the Year, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2014, and 2015; CCAC Cross Country Women's Coach of the Year, 2010, 2011, and 2013.
During his career, he has coached seven NAIA National Champion Track & Field Individual Titles; one NAIA National Champion Track & Field Relay; 71 NAIA All-American Individual Performances; 15 NAIA All-American Relay Performances; 54 NAIA Academic All-Americans; five Drake Relay Titles, including a meet record in the women's Distance Medley Relay; and an Olympic Trials Athlete, who currently owns two U.S. Championship titles and competed in the World Games in Daigu, South Korea.
He has served as Conference Cross Country/Track & Field chair; Region VII Cross Country/Track & Field chair; and National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) National Track & Field Meet vice chair. In 2006, 2007 and 2008, he served on the NCCAA National Track & Field Meet Games Committee. In 2012, 2013, and 2014 he served on the NAIA National Outdoor Track & Field Meet Games Committee. He serves as the 2nd Vice Chair for the NAIA National Outdoor Track & Field Coaches Association as of 2015.
He is a member of the United States Track & Field/Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) and USA Track & Field (USATF). He is USATF Level 3 certified in the endurance events and Level 2 certified in the throws, sprints, hurdles, relays and jumps events.
Coach McDowell and his wife, Janet, are the parents of daughter, Kasey (married to Mark Meinhart), and the grandparents of Lillie and Miles.
In his leisure time, he enjoys fishing, running, traveling and spending time with his family.