Beavs tied at the top for Arizona hoss

AFTER OREGON STATE'S youth football summer camp had come to a close Tuesday, Mitchel Hunt received his first scholarship offer. Most schools see Hunt on the defensive line at the next level, but one's also talking to him about playing center. The hoss from Tempe has co-favorites in the recruiting process and both, he said, put on one heck of an instructional camp.

The Beavers and the Aggies are the frontrunners for the 6-3, 260-pound Hunt. The coaches at both schools are a big reason why. Coach Cavanaugh is recruiting Hunt for Oregon State.

"Oh I really liked them," said Hunt about the OSU staff. "They seemed like they genuinely cared about you as a player and also as a human being -- I really liked them for that. And they know what they're talking about. I like the technique I was taught and overall, they're great guys. Coach (Mike) Riley is a great head football coach, I really like him."

Hunt arrived in Corvallis on Saturday, tore it up right out of the gate on Sunday and had his first college scholarship offer from Riley on Tuesday.

"Sunday I got thrown right into practice and started unloading on people," said Hunt. "I had a lot of fun."

Besides Oregon State and A&M, he's seeing the most recruiting attention from Alabama, Texas Tech and Northwestern. He's also regularly hearing from UCLA, Cal, ASU, Nevada, UNLV, and NAU.

HUNT SAID THE OSU and Texas A&M camps were notable for the hands-on teaching offered by the college coaches, something not always the case at other school's camps.

"I particularly enjoyed this camp because of the instruction I received," said Hunt. "Coach Newhouse, the way he taught us, it was above some of the other camps. Some other camps, the head d-line coach wasn't teaching, it was high school coaches."

Hunt's father and grandfather attended Texas A&M.

"I've always had a dream of playing there," said Hunt. "I really like coach (Dennis) Franchione and coach (Stan) Eggen, who is the d-line coach. I really liked working with him at (A&M's) camp -- his instruction was top-notch as well. His instruction and Oregon State's instruction were about the same, and I really liked both camps.

SCHOOLS ARE RECRUITING Hunt mostly at d-tackle or d-end, although a couple Beaver coaches are both eyeing the big man for their line units.

"At Oregon State they're recruiting me more as an athlete -- Coach Cavanaugh wants me to play center and coach (Greg) Newhouse wants me to go on defense," Hunt said with a laugh. "I asked coach Riley...he told me they'll let me play the position I want to because of the experience I have in it, they don't want to take you of that spot where you're comfortable."

ALL THINGS BEING EQUAL, Hunt prefers to play defense. Besides the importance of the coaching staff, Hunt wants to play at a school where the town shuts down on Saturdays.

"The things that are most important, definitely, are how the town and school are with each other. If its a real football town -- that's what I'm looking for. Academics, of course. And (location as well), making sure my family can attend games easily and watch me grow as a player. Also, what other activities are there besides school and football."

"The coach I really want to play for is definitely a teacher -- not only on the football field but also in life. I can always go back to him and ask him for advice, and not just on the football field. The type of coach that will teach you life lessons, that's the type of coach I really want to play for."

HUNT DOESN'T HAVE a timetable on when he'll make a decision.

"My senior season is more important right now than being recruited," he said.

LAST SEASON at Corona Del Sol High, Hunt racked up 50 tackles with 4.5 sacks and 9 tackles for loss totaling 49 yards. He also recovered three fumbles with one forced fumble. Solid numbers to be sure, but it's only about half the story. Because Corona Del Sol High crushed many of the teams they played, Hunt regularly found his night's work done by the third quarter. Hunt estimates he only played in 26 out of 48 quarters.

For his efforts, he was named second team All-region as a defensive tackle. His sophomore year, he was also selected All-region as a defensive end.

Besides Oregon State and A&M, Hunt has attended the Nebraska and Utah summer camps. Next up for him is Senior Day at A&M on July 15, followed by a trip to Rice for Lineman Day on July 16.

Mitchel Hunt profile

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