With March Madness right around the corner, Mississippi State is poised for a championship run. The Bulldogs have the deepest roster in the game, as anyone is capable of taking over, especially in March. Having said that, Mississippi State has what every team wishes for in tournament play, an x-factor. Though she may not start, Jazzmun Holmes has proven her ability to ignite the Bulldogs and take them a level higher.
Holmes is a lethal spark plug and catalyst on both ends of the floor. While Mississippi State has a tendency to relax when nursing large leads, Holmes’ energy gives the team a wakeup call. Her willingness to win and fearless mindset are dangerous and have intimidated opponents more often than not. Holmes has made game-changing play after game-changing play, and that will only continue throughout the tournament.
She made her name under the primetime lights at home against the reigning national champion South Carolina Gamecocks. It was a sellout at the Hump, and Holmes made the most of getting revenge on her arch-rival. She slammed the door late with force, ultimately leading the Bulldogs to a 67-53 victory.
Head coach Vic Schaefer preaches toughness, and Holmes has shown it time and time again. She plays each possession as if it’s the last on both ends of the floor. Holmes will fight for the ball and often take risks, but for the better.
While she won’t fill the stat line with mind blowing numbers, Holmes’ energy and one of a kind attitude speak the highest volumes. Mississippi State is an offensive powerhouse, but prides itself on tenacious defense, arguably the most outstanding element of Holmes’ game. She will go for every steal with quick hands and a nose for the ball, both gifts that only so many have defensively.
A will to win of Holmes’ caliber is rare in today’s game and a desired trait. She is also vocal on and off the court, often having a word or two for the opposition. Holmes could get a bit erratic at times, as she does commit turnovers. However, she has addressed that issue and shown improvement as of late.
Holmes is two-way mastermind and one of the game’s most underrated players. The junior guard has shown flashes and is on her way to superstardom. March Madness is a bright stage, and the brighter the moment, the better Holmes plays. The Bulldogs will likely reach the Final Four, and Holmes’ journey throughout March and early April will be a great one.
She knows what time it is and will do anything to reach the ultimate goal. It takes a work ethic and drive to win, and Holmes has it. Holmes has learned from her coaches and teammates, and is always willing to take advice. Mississippi State will be feared all tournament long, in large part due to a lit fuse named Jazzmun Holmes.