The last couple years the IU staff has put an emphasis on getting defensive backs with length and athleticism, and with recent commit LaDamion Hunt they have a corner who has both of those attributes. Peegs.com spoke with Carrollton (GA) Carrollton H.S. coach Sean Calhoun about his standout player and why he was a prospect that so many schools were after.
Coach Calhoun said that Hunt brings great size and athletic ability to the football field, and he has the ability to impact both on defense and on special teams.
“First and foremost when you are recruiting defensive backs, especially at the cornerback position, the way the game is going most people want some length and guys who can move and are athletic and he fits all that criteria,” Coach Calhoun said about Hunt. “He is a 6-foot corner and he returns kicks. He’s just a very, very versatile player and we think the sky is the limit for him. I think he can play anywhere on the back end, but it just kind of depends on the scheme and what Indiana wants him to do.”
The first few years of his high school career Hunt was primarily used as a safety, but this spring after Coach Calhoun took over the Carrollton program he asked Hunt to move to corner and so far the transition has gone very well.
“We did it knowing that we’re going to play a bunch of spread teams, and in our scheme we’re definitely going to rely on our corners to limit some match-ups,” the Carrollton head coach said about the move of Hunt to corner. “We need our best football player, especially on defense, to be out there on the other team’s big dog receiver. He had played it a little so it isn’t totally new to him, but we moved him out there to be the guy to lock down the top receiver on the other team. He has taken it and ran with it and understands that he is the leader of the defense. He understands that role and he is embracing it.”
Even though Coach Calhoun has not been at Carrollton for very long he knows that he has a special player and young man in Hunt.
“He is a very, very fun kid to be around,” Coach Calhoun said when asked what Hunt is like away from the field. “He has a real good personality. He loves football and he is a football junkie. He always wants to be around football and he always wants to be talking football. He is a guy that loves his family. His brother (Tay Hunt) also plays for us and he is a junior. He is going to be a good football player as well. They are real tight with their aunt and with their mother. But LaDamion is a good kid and a very respectful kid, and a very hardworking kid. He works extremely hard in the classroom, in the weight room, and on the field. I can’t ask him to do any more than he already he is, I can just ask him to maintain what he’s been doing and hopefully the other kids can feed off of it.”
Before he took over the Carrollton program Coach Calhoun was on the staffs at two big programs in Georgia, and at both stops he was able to develop a relationship with the IU staff and see firsthand the impressive job they do when it comes to recruiting.
“It helped them a little bit that the last two schools I have been at (Collins Hill H.S. & Colquitt County H.S.) I have been the recruiting coordinator so I have gotten to know some of the coaches at Indiana,” Coach Calhoun said. “And I really got to know Coach (William) Inge and Coach (Brandon) Shelby over the last year-and-a-half because Shaun Bonner, who is now at Indiana, I coached him the last two years. So that was a great start to that relationship. But they’re top-notch. They know how recruiting is done with the steady communication and with being honest. They don’t try to sell something that they don’t have or something that’s not true, which I think these kids respect. They know how to relate to young people.”
Hunt committed to Indiana and without making a visit to the school and Coach Calhoun said that is a testament to the job the IU staff did in building a relationship with him.
“One of the biggest things in recruiting is just being steady and the constant communication and showing kids how much you really want them, and Indiana does a phenomenal job with that,” Coach Calhoun said. “You’re talking about a kid who committed to them sight unseen and that speaks volumes to the job they were able to do.”