Iran Bennett is a really, really big kid. Super big. Huge, even. When someone says they weigh "around 290" and you think they might have undersold it a little, you know you're dealing with a very large human.
Bennett doesn't just make the scale groan and moan, he plays with a scowl. He backs up that scowl with around 290 of meanness, shoving opponents out of the way with relish and getting the most out of his powerful 6-8 body.
All jokes aside, he's a nice kid and a pretty good player already who's getting better. I regarded him as a project last fall, but over the past six months he has become bouncier and now dunks straight-up and has improved his post footwork. He carries a monstrous set of mitts and catches tough passes pretty well in traffic.
He enjoyed some favorable matchups at the N.C. Top 80, sure, but when won't someone that size enjoy favorable matchups?
Bennett does need to improve his conditioning and skills, and he'd still be a powerhouse even if he dropped some pounds. He knows that, too, and is putting together a plan to maximize his ability.
"I weigh around 290 right now, but 260 is my goal," Bennett said. "I'm going to go on a diet plan this summer to see how much I can take off. I'm also working on my footwork and my strength and conditioning."
A native of Charlotte who plays for Durham (N.C.) Bull City Prep, Bennett will compete with Team Loaded on the travel circuit. Only a sophomore, he has two more years of high school to cultivate his game and his recruitment.
Even now, some major conference programs have come calling. He has claimed offers from Cincinnati, Ohio State and Georgetown, cited heavy attention from N.C. State and said that the now-departed Wake Forest staff "was close" to offering.
Bennett may not be a fit for everyone, if that school wants to play at 100 miles per hour. But spaceaters remain in high demand, and mean spaceaters are all the more valuable.