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Richmond High alum returns home in loss to Cal

on November 12, 2009

HOMECOMING FOR EX-OILER: His team may have been outmatched Wednesday night, but Richmond High graduate Eli Holman had a strong individual showing in his return to the Bay Area, scoring 15 points for the University of Detroit in a 95-61 loss to Cal.

Holman, a 6-foot-10 center, was a Scouts Inc. top-100 recruit in 2007 when he signed with the University of Indiana after his senior year at Richmond. But after seeing little playing time his first year, Holman transferred to Detroit. The team is now coached by former Hoosiers assistant Ray McCallum, who initially recruited Holman to Indiana.

Holman sat out last season after transferring schools, as required by the NCAA.

So Wednesday night marked Holman’s first game with Detroit. He started, played 30 minutes, and shot 5-of-10 from the field and 5-of-6 from the line. He also had seven rebounds, two blocks and an assist for the Titans (0-1), who play out of the Horizon League.

During his senior year at Richmond High, Holman helped the Oilers to a Division-II state title. He averaged 24.7 points, 12 rebounds and an astonishing 10 blocks per game that year, after not playing as a junior. Holman missed several games in 2007 after being grazed by a bullet during a drive-by shooting.

Roy Rogers, Holman’s former coach at Richmond, said he couldn’t make the game on Wednesday, but was proud when he saw the highlights on TV.

“That’s great, to see him playing,” Rogers said, “that’s for sure.”

Holman isn’t the only former Oiler playing collegiately: His old frontcourt mate at Richmond, Wendell McKines, is now at New Mexico State, and averaged 6.4 points and 5.9 rebounds per game last season.

The Aggies are also in the Bay Area, preparing for their first game of the season Friday night in Moraga against St. Mary’s. But McKines has been ruled academically ineligible this semester, and is not traveling with the team. He could return by sometime in mid-December if he is re-instated.

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