Hannes Polla ready to be an Oklahoma Sooner
The Oklahoma Sooners stuck on Thursday with a massive commitment in the frontcourt by landing the services of Hannes Polla. A 6-foot-11 center that defines what it means to be a space eater, while the Big 12 bunch was involved with a few local recruits, nabbing the Finnish born big man looks to be an excellent addition to their 2017 class thus far.
Running with the Helsinki Basketball Academy program, the same group that current Arizona freshman star big man Lauri Markkanen suited up for last year, Polla will bring an immediate presence and some toughness to the interior next year. Capable of facing his man up and converting on mid-post jumpers, Polla’s true strength comes around the basket.
Domestically, there just aren’t many the size and strength of Polla throughout the high school ranks. Capable of changing shots at the basket due to the sheer size of him, the Finnish big man is a solid rebounder of the basketball. He is decently skilled with his back to the basket as he can convert on hook shots over his left shoulder and has fine touch on putback attempts. While he should not be seen as a premier athlete, Polla’s explosiveness should improve in the coming years where he recently tore his ACL last year.
Beating out the likes of Tulane and Penn State for the near 7-footer, Polla took an official visit to Norman last week and now becomes the second commitment within the Sooners’ 2017 recruiting class. The recent hiring of former Rice assistant, Carlin Hartman, paid dividends in luring the Finnish big man to American soil as the new coach on staff has a solid background in recruiting overseas.
Joining Polla at Oklahoma next winter will be Brady Manek, a sharpshooting and versatile forward from the state. Of course, the Sooners remain heavily in the hunt for its top target in the senior class, Trae Young. Regardless, it would seem that the Lon Kruger and his gang have solidified their frontcourt for years to come and will now place all hands on deck in their pursuit of the five-star guard from Norman North High School.