D.J. Hunter was once a Tennessee Volunteer commit. Hunter faced some adversity soon after the commit and his path led him down a different road as he ended up at the University of Marshall. While not the direction Hunter was initially hoping for he worked hard on and off the field and the path that led him to Marshall is something he would have never regret.
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Scott Porter: You have fought through adversity. What factors do you attribute to fighting through that adversity and becoming the person on and off the field you are today?
D.J. Hunter: You know, what is a good story without adversity? God puts his strongest soldiers through the hardest battles. I feel like I was dealt this life because I was strong enough to live it and my main goal in life is to share my testimony to kids and let them know you can make it through anything that you go through, no matter how dark the path looks nothing in life is going to be easy but god said it would be worth it and it was worth it. I was granted with the opportunity to play for Marshall University and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else through the ups and downs. I love my school and what it did for me. I bleed green like are team Chaplin says “I’m a partial of Marshall”. College Grad and Freshmen All American, which only had 3 in the schools history! Anything is possible!
Scott Porter: You have played both S and LB at Marshall. Where do you see yourself playing in the NFL? Does it matter which position you play in the NFL?
D.J. Hunter: I see myself playing wherever they think will help the team the best. Put me special teams or defense whatever gets me in the door that’s what I will do. I’m down for anything. I’ll take the Julian Edelman route and do whatever gives me a shot to make a roster.
Scott Porter: What are your biggest strengths?
D.J. Hunter: My biggest strengths I would say are my speed and physicality that I play with.
Scott Porter: Right now I have you graded as one of the most underrated prospects in college football. What benefits do you see in being the underdog?
D.J. Hunter: The benefits I see of being an underdog is the edge it gives you over some players, because they become complacent, thinking they have arrived and me being an underdog I have the biggest chip on my shoulder just to prove doubters wrong going into training for pro day and the all star game I attended in Texas. I really have to take this training personal everyday and work hard everyday and come with a blue collar work ethic.
Scott Porter: What type of person is an NFL team getting in D.J. Hunter?
D.J. Hunter: D.J. Hunter is a player that’s going to work hard every single day with a blue collar work ethic and will do anything to help the team win.
Scott Porter: What hobbies do you have off the field?
D.J. Hunter: I really just relax. I’m not into video games and all that. That’s my roommate Elvis McKelvey (laughing).
Scott Porter: What do you like most about playing football?
D.J. Hunter: What I like most about the game is the rush you get being out there in front of the fans in the “Joan” with your brothers. There is no better feeling in the world then that. Just the sound the crowd makes after a big play or a big hit. It’s like ice running through your veins on Saturdays in the “Joan” which felt like heaven on earth. I have memories there that I’ll keep for a lifetime.
Scott Porter: What advice would you have for a student athlete who may be forced with fighting through adversity like you did?
D.J. Hunter: The advice I would have for a kid that might be fighting through adversity is to control what you can control and just keep your faith in God. The things you can control are your effort and your attitude. You can’t control the personnel of another team, you can’t control the play calls or your reps sometimes but it’s what you do with those reps that matters the most. Just be patient and God will put you in the situation when he feels like it’s time for you to get it, like he did for me with the Invite to participate in the CGS All Star game in Dallas Texas. Just stay patient and keep working hard. You might not think your hard work is going to pay off but in due time your number will be called and you have to be ready to take advantage of it.
Scott Porter: You were invited to a SR bowl All-Star game. What was that experience like for you?
D.J. Hunter: Yes sir! I was. that was a big blessing for me. I was able to go there and compete with a great group of guys and show what I could do. It was a great experience for me. I’m just glad god blessed me with the opportunity. Marshall had two great players last year including our conferences defensive player of the year and all american, Neville Hewitt, not invited to the combine or an all star game along with my roommate Darryl Roberts, who was drafted by the New England Patriots. I was really just blessed with the opportunity.