Jalar Holley is a former three-star defensive tackle prospect from Buford High School in Georgia but lists his hometown as Queens, NY. Holley, a six-foot-two, 282 pound redshirt freshman, was rated the 58th and 59th best defensive tackle in the country per 247 Sports and ESPN, respectively. However since signing with Miami, Holley has been known more for his dance moves than his pass rush move.
As a true freshman, Holley earned playing time in two games including a cupcake game against FCS school Bethune Cookman and the Walk-On’s Independence Bowl against Louisiana Tech. After not registering a stat in 2019, Holley earned more playing time in 2020.
Holley played in seven games last season, logging six tackles including a career high three tackles against the UNC Tar Heels. Holley should find himself in the five man rotation at defensive tackle in 2021 alongside Nesta Jade Silvera, Jordan Harrison-Hunte, Jon Ford, and Jordan Miller.
In his highlight tape (above) from high school you can see exactly what the coaches loved about him. If you flip back to my piece called, “What college coaches look for in a defensive line prospect,”
In the GIF above Holley is playing left defensive tackle in a 3-technique (outside shoulder of the guard). Holley fits most of the DT criteria the G5 recruiting coach told me were important. Holley has quickness, his ability to read and react to the ball is weak but his ability to read blocks is strong, he flashes lateral quickness, balance, and definitely burst.
So if Holley fits the recruiting mold, and has the size and burst to play at this level... what gives? I don’t know him personally, obviously, so I can’t attest to his mental toughness, disciplined habits or drive and motivation- but the difference between guys on the team and starters typically falls into those three categories once you’re at the P5 level.
2021 season prediction: 15 tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, 1 sack.