UPDATED: Junior forward Marcus Holt leaving CSU basketball program

Forward Marcus Holt performs a winning dunk during Moby Madness at Moby Arena earlier this year.
Forward Marcus Holt performs a winning dunk during Moby Madness at Moby Arena.

Junior forward Marcus Holt is leaving the Colorado State basketball program. Holt is the second player to leave the program since Thursday afternoon after freshman guard David Cohn was granted his release two days prior.

“Both Marcus and David indicated that they are looking for a different opportunity and a better fit to continue their playing careers,” head coach Larry Eustachy said in a statement. “Both are great character guys. We appreciate all the hard work that they put in this season and I we will do anything we can to help support them in this transition.”

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Holt, a 6’10” native of Aurora, came to CSU in 2013 after two seasons at Paris Junior College in Paris, Texas. In his only season with the Rams, Holt averaged averaged 3.0 points and 2.7 rebounds while playing just over 12 minutes per game. Holt also led the Rams with 21 blocks.

“I’m blessed to have played at CSU this year, mainly so that my family could come and see me play, and I am thankful for the opportunity I had here, but I will be moving on to a new university,” Holt posted on his personal Facebook page.

Holt can play immediately should he transfer to a Division II school, or he will be required to sit out next season and have one year of eligibility remaining should he transfer to a Division I program, per NCAA transfer rules.

Holt, as well as Cohn, was on a short list of players who could possibly transfer to another school for the opportunity of more playing time. After posting a career-high 15 points against the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs in the Rams’ season opener, Holt struggled to find playing time as CSU began using a three-guard offense along with J.J. Avila and Gerson Santo at the forward spots. Although he came back into the picture late in the season in Colorado State’s loss to Utah State in the Mountain West tournament with three blocks and a dominant defensive effort against Aggie forward Jarred Shaw, Holt saw the writing on the wall when he realized the Rams were over-signed for next season.

Along with returning forward Avila, transfers Daniel Mulamba (Southwestern Christian University), Stanton Kidd (North Carolina Central), Dantiel Daniels (Southern Illinois), and former Louisville standout Chane Behanan will be eligible to play next season, creating a very deep frontcourt, something the Rams lacked this season.

Holt’s departure means that Colorado State is no longer over the NCAA scholarship limit. CSU currently has 13 players signed for next season. Avila, Mulamba, Kidd, Daniels, and Behanan will be joined by three other returning starters in Joe De Ciman, Jon Octeus, and Daniel Bejarano and two key reserves, Dwight Smith and Carlton Hurst. Colorado State will also add transfers John Gillon and Gian Louis Clavell as well as prep star Jeremiah Paige, Holt’s teammate at Rangeview High School.

Collegian Reporter Keegan Pope can be reached at sports@collegian.com and on Twitter @kpopecollegian.