IU Basketball: Players Need to be Students and Adults


News broke last week, that two players from the IU basketball program, were cited for illegal alcohol possession. Those two players were Emmitt Holt and five-star recruit Thomas Bryant.

According to a news release by excise police, Bryant and Holt, both members of the IU basketball team, were cited attempting to conceal bottles of vodka at a Convenient Food Mart 12:50 a.m. last Saturday.

Let that be lesson number one at being a student. Don’t be out in public with alcohol, or trying to buy alcohol after midnight. This is a lesson I learned myself during my time at Indiana University.

I was once cited in a CVS parking lot for alcohol possession with a minor. What actually took place, was me being too under the influence to drive. Trying to be responsible, I asked one of my fraternity brothers to run me to CVS so we could…keep the party going. He was under age, wasn’t drinking at all, and came into CVS to get a soda (or pop as I like to call it). We walked out together, got in his car, and before we could start the engine, flashing lights were behind us.

CVS security (as I like to call him), gave me a citation. Apparently, it’s illegal in Bloomington to have a minor in the car with alcohol. I said, “Parents purchase alcohol at stores with their children with them all the time. How is being responsible, and having a sober driver, illegal?” Regardless, I got a ticket, and a less than thrilling reception from my fraternity brothers, when I showed back up empty-handed.

However, I learned my lesson, and never took that chance again. Enter Emmitt Holt.

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Holt was behind the wheel in November of last year, when then teammate Devin Davis, unexpectedly walked into the road in front of Holt’s car. Davis suffered a head injury, one that cost him the entire 2014-15 season, and Holt was cited for illegal consumption of alcohol (a misdemeanor) and for operating under the influence of alcohol (an infraction) under the age of 21. He was suspended for two exhibition games and two regular-season games last season.

The lesson clearly was not learned.

Other than the fact it’s illegal, we all know that underage drinking takes place in college. The thing about underage drinking, is you have to know how not to get caught, but more importantly how to make the right decisions as a young adult. Millions of students are successful at this concept, year in and year out.

I witnessed of handful of the IU basketball players on Mike Davis‘ National Championship runner-up team, “having a good time” while I was at IU….but they were smart about it. In today’s world where everything ends up on social media, and everyone has become so sensitive on every subject, you have to really watch yourself. Even more so as a student athlete.

IU basketball players, while still student athletes, should know they are in the spotlight. They’re pretty much celebrities on campus, and they love that spotlight when it means fans and girls. This issue is they also have to embrace that spotlight when it seems like no one is watching.

Being a student athlete comes with a lot of responsibility. Many want to point the finger at head coach Tom Crean, but we can’t expect him to being following up with his basketball team at 1 a.m. in the morning. Coaches, and even parents can preach to their children to do the right thing, but ultimately they’re going to make their own decisions. Once those decisions are made, then they must face the consequences of those decisions.

If the Hoosiers men’s basketball team wants to keep making mistakes, then the IU basketball program will continue to suffer the consequences of their actions. These guys need learn how to be responsible adults, and make responsible decisions like normal college students…..even if they’re anything but.

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