Holt joins 6’10” Jeremiah April and 6’9″ Tim Priller as late, “under-the-radar” recruits who have been brought in to help alleviate IU’s desperate situation in the post. Here’s a look at what the team’s stable of scholarship players standing 6’7″ or above looks like now:
Don’t let this list provide a false sense of security. Indiana does not have seven “big men.” Tim Priller is most comfortable hanging around the three point line, Hoetzel’s strength is also his jump shot and Williams’ slender frame isn’t best suited for defending centers or power forwards. It’s hard to tell what we can expect from April, as his high school film shows him playing against players half a foot shorter, and he wasn’t able to play during the team’s trip to The Great White North. The only two players fans can reasonably expect to battle with opposing big uglies this year are perennial enigma Hanner Mosquera-Perea and up-and-coming Devin Davis, which is exactly why today’s addition is a big deal.
Emmitt Holt is not a slasher. He’s not a shooter. His handles aren’t impressive. He is a true, old school power forward, and he is exactly what the team needed.
Holt’s film reveals a high energy athlete with a preference for dunking and the ability to disrupt opponents with a 7’3″ wingspan. It’s hard not to draw comparisons between Holt and Louisville’s Montrezl Harrell, who has more dunks than any player in his school’s history after just two seasons.
Here’s a quick side by side comparison of the two players as high school seniors*:
It sure would be nice if the statistical parallels continued. This past season Harrell averaged 14 points, 8.4 rebounds and provided plenty of entertainment for fans. Of course Harrell only averaged 5.7 points and and 3.7 rebounds as freshman and comparing his high school film to that of Holt shows why Harrell was an elite prospect coming out of Hargrave Military while Holt has been a relative unknown.
Even so, Holt’s potential to fill a glaring need for the 2014 Hoosiers is hard to ignore. Mosquera-Perea has done nothing to convince fans he’s ready to finally live up to his hype as the 9th ranked PF coming out of high school, and while Davis will certainly contribute this year, his relatively short 6’11” wingspan limits his potential to disrupt shots.
Indiana doesn’t need Holt to become the next Montrezl Harrell. They simply need another big body willing to play like a big. They need rebounds and a disruptive post defender. They may have gotten their man today.