Former Sac State football player finds a new calling

Q&A with Dariyn Choates on his clothing line and entrepreneurship


Rahul Lal

Former Sac State football player Dariyn Choates said he started his clothing line, ONBS, in part because seeing his father become an entrepreneur inspired him to create his own business. Photo by Shaun Holkko, illustration by Rahul Lal.

Jason Gallardo

The last time former Sacramento State football player Dariyn Choates put on a Hornets Jersey, it was against Austin Peay State University in the Hornets’ first-ever Division I playoff game in 2019.

In 2019, Choates was named first team All-Big Sky Conference and made the Sac State Football All-Decade Team as a defensive lineman. 

Due to COVID-19, Choates was not able to participate in Sac State’s Pro Day, leaving him unable to perform for NFL scouts.

According to Mary Hambury and Hayley Peterson of Businesses Insider companies have been forced to close stores or lay off their employees, due to the pandemic. However, Choates has found a way to start his own clothing line ONBS, which stands for “ON BullShit.” 

The State Hornet sat down with Choates to talk about his football future and clothing line. 

Question: Are you still looking to play football?

Answer: Right now, I’m leaning to hanging it up. I did my time with the football gang. But as of right now, I have another calling in life.

RELATED: Dominant defense leads the way for Sac State football team

Q: What is your “calling?” 

A: I’m an entrepreneur. It got passed down through generations, me just wanting to run the show instead of working for somebody.

Q: How did your dad inspire you to become an entrepreneur?

A: He just worked hard all the way up. Just a young dude in Seaside just working for somebody until he can open up his own store. Now he owns a club and a store. 

Q: How did you get the idea to start a clothing line?

A: It was me and a group of my teammates that just sat down and talked. I was like, hey, I want to get something going. It came to the point where I just started making clothes. I didn’t know it was going to sell like this. 

Q: How did you come up with the name ONBS?

A: Me just yelling out a bunch of stuff. And I was like that’s it right there. 

Story continues below photo.

The logo for former Sac State football player Dariyn Choates’ clothing brand, ONBS. Photo courtesy of Dariyn Choates.

Q: Do you have worries that people won’t buy your clothes because of the pandemic putting people out of work?

A: I honestly thought this was the best time to do it with all the stuff going on in the world. People are trying to support Black business. This is the best time to motivate yourself and do your thang. Social media is powerful right now. Black people are supporting other Black people, this is the best time to do it right now. 

Q: Have people been interested in the clothes?

A: I sold out. I did 100 shirts and 42 hoodies in the first batch. The second batch was all sold out two to three days ago. 

Q: Have you just been selling to your friend in Seaside and Sacramento? 

A: No. I have been selling to people in Atlanta, Vegas and Washington. I’ve been shipping all domestically. And if anyone out of the country wants some, I’ll ship it to them too. 

Q: How do you see this growing in the next two to three years?

A: I’m hopeful that I can get it into some stores. Hopefully, I can get a famous person to wear my thang. Honestly, it’s just a movement. I don’t want to be a popular clothing design artist. I just want to start a hustle. I just want to push my brand, this is who we are. We are from the 831, just doing it.