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Getting to know Florida State basketball commit Sardaar Calhoun

’Noles got a steal.

Sardaar Calhoun (Twitter)

Sardaar Calhoun committed to Leonard Hamilton’s Florida State Seminoles back in September:

Calhoun plays for Missouri State-West Plains in the JUCO ranks. The 247 Sports Composite shows him with a 90 rating (high 3*). He’s the 3rd best JUCO prospect nationally.

He’s currently on spring break, so we caught up with him from his home in Tappahannock, Virginia (what a name, huh?) for a closer look at his recruitment, and what Seminole fans can expect once he arrives in Tallahassee:

Can you just take us through your back-story a little? What was recruitment like out of high school?

“Recruitment out of HS was good for the most part. A lot of low and mid-major programs loved my game, but I knew I could play at the highest level because I work extremely hard! I love it all: weight room, court, sand, hill, and pool. I enjoy it all, and that took me over the hump to being one of the best recruits in 2020, and the JUCO platform was everything I expected and more.”

So when did Florida State first get in touch with you?

I met Coach Gates at the Florida State vs UVA game when Dwayne Bacon hit the game-winner, and we had a conversation while I was waiting to get a picture with Bacon after the game. He said: ‘Calhoun, I’m going to remember you, keep working!’ And sure enough, a few years go by, and he’s at my JUCO camp (JA45 invitational), and it clicked just like our previous conversation back in the day.”

And how did Coach Ham, Coach Jones, and CY keep that going?

“Great! It’s [like] I was always meant to be a Seminole. Coach (Steve) Smith has known me since I was a young fella with no facial hair. Haha. He recruited my best friend Aamir Simms out of high school when he was with the Clemson Tigers, and he loved my game then! And Coach Jones is a legend, he knows everyone! Coach Hamilton and Coach CY are the best, I’m glad they chose me! I’m honored to be a Seminole.”

What most attracted you to Florida State?

“[There are] so many [things], but the trait many universities don’t really have is unity! Everyone is bought in! The players play together and everyone has one thing on their minds, and that’s a National Championship! FSU culture is one-of-a-kind. I was mind-blown on my visit, and I didn’t want to leave! I had in my mind that I was a Seminole before I left campus.”

Who was with you on your visit?

“My mom and sister.”

After committing to FSU did other schools continue to come after you hard? If so, which ones?

“All the coaches respected my decision!”

So they left you alone, or they came after you still, and you just had to tell them “no”?

“I called every school that offered me and thanked them for their time. That meant a lot to them because they said some recruits just [beat] around the bush, instead of just [telling] the truth. They told me if I ever needed anything they’d be willing to help.”

What’s Coach Ham like?

“He’s a role model on and off the court! Very professional, [but he] loves to have fun. He treats his players and coaches like family. The list could go on about Coach Hamilton. I love my coach, and I want to win him a National Championship badly. He deserves it.”

How disappointed were you for Coach Ham and the guys with how this season ended?

“I was Sad! I know how hard those guys worked day in and day out, and I feel really bad for our seniors, Dom and Trent, who had to end their season that way. I know this’ll bring [even more] fuel to the fire this upcoming season.”

On a positive note, how about FSU winning the ACC regular season title for the first time ever?

“[It’s] awesome, and it’s just the beginning.”

How many FSU games did you get to watch this year?

“Every game! This season was fun to watch.”

The rankings still have you as a 3*. Do you feel disrespected by that? How much does it make you want to work even harder to prove people wrong?

“I’m a Seminole at the end of the day, and that’s higher than any star in my book. [However, I] definitely want to work on my footwork; I want to master my footwork after the greats like Kobe Bryant, Jordan, Melo, etc...”

Any current players you look up to/model your game after?

“I love watching Bradley Beal and Dennis Smith, Jr! I enjoy grabbing pieces from their games and adding [them] to mine.”

How would you describe your game to people who haven’t gotten the chance to see you play?

“I’m a skilled all-around player, with a good frame! If you watch Bradley Beal play, you’d say me and him are alike. I keep things simple. No more than three dribbles needed on my offensive end. I’m just in attack right from the tip.”

How about the defensive end? We know Coach Ham stresses defense.

“That’s what I love most about the Seminole Culture! On the defensive end, we break teams down and make them fold. Prime example: that Louisville game at home; Louisville couldn’t run [its] offense the whole second half!”

And you feel like you’re ready to step right in & play defense at that level?

“[Maybe] not right away! But I know I’m in good hands.”

What do you expect that transition to be from JUCO to the ACC?

“I think I’ll transition great! I’m a good kid, and I’m a excellent listener. I love being coached, and I want to win a National Championship. I’m just excited, man—I’m pumped up!”

Anything you want to share with Nole Nation?

“I just want Nole Nation to get ready! It’s going be one to remember.”