Presser Bullets: Chris Holtmann Says Freshman Development Will Be Crucial For OSU, Talks Leadership, Justice Sueing's Health at Big Ten Media Days

By Griffin Strom on October 12, 2022 at 10:43 am

The Buckeye men's basketball coach took his turn at the Target Center podium Wednesday for an opening press conference at Big Ten Media Days in Minneapolis.

Chris Holtmann, the third men's coach to speak on stage on the second day of Big Ten Media Days festivities, issued an opening statement to media members in attendance before opening things up for questions.

After Holtmann's initial media appearance, the Ohio State head coach will hold a 30-minute breakout interview session at 1 p.m. Before that, Justice Sueing, Zed Key and Isaac Likekele are scheduled to speak with members of the media in a joint availability at noon.

For everything Holtmann said in his opening press conference, though, check out the bullet-point breakdown below:

Chris Holtmann

  • Holtmann jokes about some people not wanting the event to be in Minnesota: "We're coaches, we'd complain if it was in our backyards."
  • Holtmann says it's a bit concerning to have so many new faces, but exciting as well.
  • Holtmann says there will be four freshmen that will have a significant role this season.
  • Holtmann expects the Big Ten to be the deepest conference in college basketball this season.
  • On Likekele representing the program before playing a game at Ohio State: "I expect all three of the young men here to play an important leadership role, along with Gene Brown." Holtmann says Likekele has "a lot of charisma."
  • "You don't know what you don't know with a young team. When you get to games, you find out some things."
  • On Sueing: "He's had no limitations right now. He did tweak his ankle, and that limited his practice last week." Holtmann says Sueing missed 3-4 days of practice due to an ankle sprain, but that he's been "full go" as far as the abdominal injury that kept him out last year.
  • Holtmann's excited about freshman center Felix Okpara's ability to play against talented bigs in the Big Ten.
  • Holtmann says the development of Ohio State's freshmen and players like Roddy Gayle and Bruce Thornton at guard "is gonna be critical to the growth of this team."

Ohio State women's basketball head coach Kevin McGuff also addressed media members Wednesday, and you can watch his opening press conference below.

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