USC Recruiting

Estonian forward Maik Kalev-Kotsar commits to South Carolina basketball

From Staff Reports

Kotsar was shocked at how huge the tournament was

South Carolina's Maik Kotsar answers questions during a breakout session.
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South Carolina's Maik Kotsar answers questions during a breakout session.

South Carolina is losing two of its bigs after this season in Laimonas Chatkevicius and Mindaugas Kacinas.

Frank Martin has now replaced both, at least physically, with a commitment from 6-foot-9 Maik Kotsar, a native of Estonia who attends Sunrise Christian Academy in Wichita, Kan.

Kotsar made an official visit to USC last Wednesday through Friday according to his coach and saw enough to know that's where he wanted to go. 

"He played in this showcase in Providence, and he played really well and got a lot of people's' attention," coach Kyle Bankhead said.  "South Carolina just did the best job. They came at him full bore.  He loved the staff and the school.  What Frank has done there has caught his interest.  He wants to play at the highest level and they are certainly playing at a high level.  He's excited about it."  

Kotsar was a member of Estonia's 18-and-under national team, and Bankhead said he came to this country already well prepared to play the game properly. 

"He has a high basketball IQ and is a very tough kid," he said.  "He's a joy to coach.  You want a kid like him in your program every year.  He's a skilled four, a very good passer and a good stand still shooter.  He's tough and he's a winner."

Kotsar joins 6-foot-10 Sedee Keita of Philadelphia and 22 Feet Academy in giving the Gamecocks a big man tandem in the class which also includes point guard Kareem Felder who committed Sunday night.