It all started Monday morning with a report from WBRZ's Chris Price. He cited a text message from Hunter that said he would not be returning to LSU. Moments later, Bleacher Report's Matt Miller confirmed that, citing other LSU players that claimed Hunter had made his decision. The Advocate also reported through anonymous sources that Hunter was going pro.
That all came to a halt when Lamar Louis responded to WBRZ's original report.
“@cpricesports: LSU defensive end Danielle Hunter says in a text message he'll move on to the NFL: "I'm not going back to LSU" Not True— Lamar Louis (@_ball_is_life23) January 5, 2015
Suddenly the momentum started to change. The Advocate later reported that after speaking with more players, that Hunter had not yet made a decision. Yahoo's Rand Getlin, who reported last week that Hunter was leaning toward staying, tweeted that he continued to hear through multiple sources that nothing had changed.
Several other LSU players tweeted out that Hunter was still making his decision and to not believe what had been reported.
Don't believe anything that the media tells you if you haven't seen or heard it from the primary source.— Nobody But ©?®ey (@ELITE23_CT) January 5, 2015
LSU sports information director Michael Bonnette even tweeted out a response to the initial report. After speaking with Hunter, Bonnette said the LSU lineman claimed to have never spoken with any member of the media regarding his NFL future. But as the day went on, it appeared that Hunter had in fact made a final decision and had started informing his teammates. A pair of LSU players posted congratulatory messages to Hunter through social media.
While we await official word from either Hunter or LSU regarding his NFL future, the writing appears to be on the wall that he's played his final game for the Tigers.
Hunter broke into the starting lineup four games into the 2013 season after playing in 12 games the previous year. Hunter never relinquished his starting role after notching eight tackles against %%MATCH_7%% in 2013.
Hunter tied for third on the team with 73 tackles, 30 of which were unassisted. He led the team with 13.5 tackles for loss and also had 1.5 sacks. He broke up six passes at the line of scrimmage, forced a fumble and recovered another one that he returned for a touchdown against %%MATCH_6%%.
If Hunter does in fact head for the NFL, he'll finish his LSU career with 142 tackles, 21 for loss and 4.5 sacks.
Hunter did receive a draft grade from the NFL, though the results have not been released. Projections have him landing anywhere from the late first round to the third round. He was widely considered one of the underclassmen most likely to return for a senior season, stressing an importance of receiving a degree and improving his pass rush.
If these Monday's indications are true though, it appears he'll be the third LSU player this year to leave early for the NFL.
Premium members can head to the TSD Message Board at the link below to track all the latest that comes out regarding Hunter's decision.