Westmoreland Alumni Q&A with Kadyn Hannah

The former Franklin Regional hoops standout transferred into Cal U this season

Tue Feb 07, 2023 - 2:35PM

Sean Meyers Sean Meyers
Franklin Regional's Kadyn Hannah is in his sophomore season at California (Pa.).Franklin Regional's Kadyn Hannah is in his sophomore season at California (Pa.).

Last Updated: Tue Feb 07, 2023 - 2:50PM

A late bloomer in high school, Kadyn Hannah made his mark on the hardwood as a senior at Franklin Regional. He parlayed that success into an incredible freshman year at La Roche last season, as he immediately became one of the top players in the conference. Now, Hannah is in his first campaign at California University of Pennsylvania after jumping up to the Division II level. Hannah is the featured athlete for this edition of the Westmoreland Alum Q&A.

Hannah joined the Franklin Regional varsity team as a sophomore in 2018-19, as the Panthers compiled a record of 17-8, including 11-3 in section play. As a result, FR qualified for the WPIAL Class 5A playoffs. After a victory against Thomas Jefferson, the Panthers came up short against Moon Area in the quarterfinals. Advancing to the state playoffs, Franklin Regional lost to Lower Dauphin in the first round of the PIAA bracket to conclude the season.

The following year, the Panthers went 11-12 overall, but had a mark of 8-6 in section play to return to the playoffs. However, Franklin Regional fell to South Fayette in the first round.

In his senior campaign in 2020-21, Hannah emerged as an All-Section performer. He helped the Panthers achieve a record of 8-8 overall, including 7-3 in the section. The Panthers defeated Armstrong in the preliminary round of the WPIAL 5A postseason, but fell to Mars Area in the first round.

Following his graduation, Hannah matriculated to La Roche University to continue his basketball career. As a freshman, Hannah started all 28 games, posting averages of 13.1 points and 5.6 rebounds, while also compiling 25 assists, 29 steals, and 20 blocks. As a result of his play, Hannah was selected as the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference (AMCC) Newcomer of the Year, and he was also chosen as an All-AMCC Second-Team performer. He helped the Redhawks post an overall record of 16-12, including 11-5 in the AMCC. In the conference tournament, La Roche bested Hilbert and Penn State Altoona, reaching the title game. The Redhawks fell to Medaille in the championship tilt, though.

Following his stellar season, Hannah opted to transfer from the Division III school, as he found a landing spot at California University of Pennsylvania at the Division II level. To this point, the sophomore forward has appeared in 20 contests, posting 3.1 points and 2.6 boards per contest, while accumulating seven assists and 10 steals. Collectively, the Vulcans have compiled a mark of 11-12, including 8-9 in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC).

Kadyn dedicated time to answer questions about the biggest adjustments between the different levels of college basketball, the impact that FR coach Steve Scorpion had on his career, and a vacation spot he’s always wanted to visit.

Q: What are the biggest differences between DIII and DII college basketball?

A: One of the biggest differences is the speed of the game. I feel you have much less time to make the right decision. In Division III, you could make a mistake and still get bailed out. At this level, anytime you make a mistake, the other team capitalizes on it. Another difference is the size and athleticism of the players. I might be slightly undersized than some of the forwards in our conference, but I try to make that up with playing hard.

Q: After starting every game at La Roche last year, you have exclusively come off the bench this season at Cal U. How does your approach and mindset change between those roles?

A: Obviously, it is a much different role than last year, but I don't think my mindset has changed too much. I go into every game with energy and the goal to do my absolute best to help my team win the game. This year coming off the bench, I try to be a spark and bring intensity. I believe that spark starts in the defensive end for us, then everything else follows.

Q: What are your best attributes on the court?

A: I think one of my best attributes is my will to play hard. I try to be the first guy to hit the floor on loose balls and to take charges. I think my rebounding ability has improved since coming to Cal.

Q: What team and individual goals did you set for the 22-23 season?

A: At the start of the season, the goal for us is to win the National Championship. We want to be a dominant defensive team and hold our opponents to poor 3-point and 2-point percentages. We always have a goal to take five charges a game. We want to have a dominant win percentage at home and defend the home court. Some of my personal goals were to take a charge every game, average two offensive rebounds a game, and become that spark off the bench. I think our main goal is to be better than we were the day before. Now that we’re in conference play, we need to improve and learn off of every game that we play.

Q: What was your favorite moment during your time at La Roche?

A: My favorite moment at La Roche was in the conference semifinals when we beat Penn State Altoona. We played them twice in the regular season and lost both. The first game, we got blown out at their place and I fouled out of the game early. Then they beat us at home, which left us stunned. In that semifinal game, we wanted to beat them badly. We came together as a team and played a great game to go to the championship.

Q: What led to your decision to transfer to Cal U?

A: It was a tough decision after losing in the championship game. I am always thankful for La Roche and Coach Carmichael. They helped me grow as a man and as a basketball player. After the season, I took some time and reflected on the season. I thought there was an opportunity to potentially go up to Division II. I have never been someone to avoid adversity. I knew it would take a lot of hard work to get to that level. I wanted to see how far hard work could take me as a basketball player. I talked to my dad and understood the risks, then made the decision to enter the portal.

Q: What is your major, and ideal future profession?

A: I am currently an economics major, but I could be switching to finance. As for my future, I don't have a definite goal yet. I have always been interested in business and the relationships you make. I also have thought about potentially coaching or going into some type of personal training.

Q: What has been your most challenging college course?

A: My most challenging course has probably been psychology. I am fascinated with behavior and the mind. It was challenging to learn all the vocabulary and concepts related to psychology.

Q: You played under coach Steve Scorpion at Franklin Regional. What were his best qualities?

A: Coach Scorp has meant a lot to me, and he is the reason I am playing basketball. Coach Scorp and Coach DeRose, my AAU coach, taught me how to play basketball. They showed me the importance of defense and always playing hard. When I would be playing a game if at any time I didn't play hard, they would hold me accountable and bench me. One of Coach Scorp’s best qualities was to always tell you how it was. If I ever made a mistake, he would never shy away from letting me know. He always let me know the truth and I am thankful for that. He's the reason I have thick skin and can hear the truth, even if it's bad. He was my first ever basketball coach and led me to become the player I am today.

Q: What was your fondest memory at Franklin Regional?

A: My fondest memory at Franklin Regional has to be senior night. I believe our team had eight seniors and we were a close group. Most of the guys had played together since elementary school. I started playing in my sophomore year of high school and they treated me like a brother. So going into this game, it hit us that we will go on our own path soon. It was an awesome experience to play in front of a home crowd with those guys.

Q: Who was the best individual player you faced in high school?

A: The best individual player had to be Puff Johnson and he plays for UNC. At the time, it was my first year and we played them in the playoffs. It was interesting to watch him play at the high school level.

Q: If you could change one rule about college basketball, what would it be?

A: One rule I might change would be the shot clock to 24 seconds. I think 30 seconds is good, but I think it would be interesting to watch the college game at 24 seconds.

Q: If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?

A: If anyone knows me, they know I love food, so this is a difficult question. I would probably have to choose sushi, mac and cheese, ribs, lamb chops, and steak.

Q: Who would you choose to portray yourself in a movie about your life?

A: The actor I would choose would have to be Christian Bale. I am a big fan of his Batman movies, so I think he would do a good job.

Q: What is your favorite vacation spot, or a place you've always wanted to visit?

A: The vacation spot I have always wanted to visit has to be Dubai. I believe there is nothing you can't do in Dubai. I would like to go to the indoor ski resort and go dune buggying.