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Published: Wednesday, 10/19/2011

6-8 shot blocker picks BGSU

BY JOHN WAGNER
BLADE SPORTS WRITER

BOWLING GREEN -- Richaun Holmes, a 6-foot-8 product of Lockport Township High School in Lockport, Ill., has verbally committed to join the Bowling Green State University men's basketball team next season.

"I really like the coaching staff at BG," Holmes said. "When I came on a visit [last weekend], I loved the campus, I loved the new gym, and I loved the players and the team."

Holmes is the second player to verbally commit to join the Falcons next season. Spencer Parker of West Bloomfield, Mich., verbally committed to BG in late September.

Holmes and Parker both are expected to sign during the early signing period next month. NCAA rules prohibit Falcons coach Louis Orr from commenting on any players' commitment until the player has signed a national letter of intent.

Holmes will play this winter at Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills, a suburb of Chicago. Last season Holmes set a school record at Lockport with 150 blocks.

Holmes will have three years of eligibility when he joins the Falcons next season. A full qualifier who scored a 29 on his ACT exam, he said he plans to major in kinesiology at BG.

"I really like science, and the study of human movement in athletics and athletic training is very interesting to me," Holmes said.

Holmes said the reason he went to Moraine Valley was that he was dissatisfied with the college offers he received while in high school.

"I got a lot of offers from Division II and Division III schools, but my dream was to play Division I basketball," he said. "When I talked to [Moraine Valley] coach Dedrick Shannon, he said he could make me strong and make me better, and that's what he's doing."

Shannon said there is a lot to like in Holmes' game.

"Richaun is very young -- he just turned 18 -- and he's still growing," Shannon said. "He's really athletic, with a 36-inch-plus vertical leap and the wingspan of a 7-footer.

"He's still a little raw, but he has an opportunity to be an outstanding player. This year we're counting on him to average a double-double if we want to reach our team goals."

Holmes said he is working on rounding out his low-post game.

"I feel I'm a good shot-blocker, and I'm a good rebounder who can score around the basket and with mid-range jumpers," he said. "But I'm a defensive-minded player who really likes to block shots.

"Blocking shots is about timing, and about seeing the shot and then getting as big and as long as you can. It's about desire and effort, and it's a chance to make a statement with your defense."

Contact John Wagner at: jwagner@theblade.com or 419-724-6481 or on Twitter @jwagnerblade.



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