When you score as many points as McAlester point guard Adante’ Holiman does, it’s hard to keep track sometimes.
In a recent game against Claremore, Holiman and the Buffs started off red-hot, jumping out to a 19-9 lead after one quarter. He didn’t realize it at the time, but the 5-9 sharpshooter had scored every one of his team’s points.
“Ya, I did,” recalled Holiman laughing. “I saw it on my phone after the game, but I didn’t realize I had done it, to be honest.”
Holiman may not always realize the numbers he’s putting up, but scouts and college coaches have certainly taken notice. He’s regarded as the number one player in Oklahoma and the 24th best point guard in the Class of 2022, according to ESPN.
He’s already scored 49 and 48 points in games this season and is averaging 34.5 points, five rebounds, four assists and four steals through seven games for the Buffs.
“He worked on his body a lot this summer and has gotten a little bigger,” said Buffs head coach and Adante’s father, Will Holiman. “He’s grown a little bit. He went from 5-9 to about 5-11.”
“Every night, he sees double teams, triple teams and stuff like that,” added the second-year coach and former Buff All-Stater. “One thing about this year compared to last year is he wanted to prove that last year wasn’t a fluke. He’s one of the leading scorers in the state. He can do it on a night-in, night-out basis.”
“The recruiting attention is nice,” admitted the four-star guard who models his game after former Norman North star and current NBA guard Trae Young. “For some people it can be stressful, but for me, it’s a blessing. It’s really exciting.”
“I’m looking for coaches that are going to push me,” continued Holiman. “Push me to my limits and turn me into not just a better basketball player, but a better man.”
Basketball is definitely a family affair for the Holimans. Along with the father-son connection of Will and Adante’, another son, Adonis, is on the roster, as is a cousin, Dre Flowers. Will’s dad, Will Holiman, Senior, is a former head coach for the Buffs and a part of the current coaching staff.
“It’s been fun,” said Adante’ on being coached by his dad and grandfather. “It’s a blessing because most kids don’t get that opportunity. I’m enjoying it now because it’ll be over soon.”
Adante’ also relishes the opportunity to mentor his younger brother.
“I know he looks up to me a little bit, so I’ve got to be a leader and show him the way because he’s going to be in my position in a few years,” claimed Holiman, who spent the past two years playing for Team Griffin on the AAU circuit and will play for Team Next Page Force this year. “I want him to handle it the same way I do.”
If Holiman can continue to perform at his current level, the Buffs will be a team to watch out for when March rolls around.
“I think we’ll be a state tournament team once I get back to full strength and we get all of our guys back,” said Coach Holiman. “We’re going to be super dangerous by the end for sure. We’re trying to make a mark for McAlester basketball and win state before Adante’ graduates since it’s never been done here.”