DaRon Holmes is another one of my personal favorite prospects in the ’23 draft class despite mostly being written off as a 2nd round prospect, but assuming for now that he doesn’t return to school for his junior season, I won’t be too surprised if he sneaks into the back end of the first round based on what he’s already shown during his two seasons with the Dayton Flyers.
I wrote in-depth about Holmes’ game early in the college basketball season, so I’d encourage you to read that if you’re looking for a longer-form analysis of his game. But in short, Holmes’ feel for the game on both ends of the floor matches or surpasses that of any other big man in the ’23 draft class. This allows him to read the opposing offense as a defender and make plays for others on offense, giving him a unique two-way upside that doesn’t rely exclusively on athleticism and/or play finishing.
With that in mind, though, Holmes is also a solid athlete despite needing to add weight to his frame. He averaged just under 2 blocks per game this season, grabbed 8.1 rebounds per game, and can hold his own switching on the perimeter. His length and athleticism allow him to contest on closeouts in a Robert Williams-esque manner and his willingness to run in transition leads to easy points frequently.