3-star DE Mufi Hunt talks Cougs, timetable

THREE-STAR defensive end Mufi Hunt has a lot of offers, says he is on the fence until Signing Day and that the pastures on Washington State's side of that fence are looking mighty attractive. Hunt, a 6-6, 215-pounder out of Salt Lake City, says he loved the family atmosphere in Pullman during his Dec. 5 visit to Wazzu. There's also a timing issue when it comes to his recruitment ...

Hunt said he established a strong connection with Mike Leach and Joe Salave'a during his trip, and felt comfortable around the entire Cougars coaching staff. Here is an extensive Q&A with Hunt, one in which he says he is not likely to join a program until two years from now ...

CF.C: What makes you interested in Washington State?
Hunt: "The huge thing that made me interested about Washington State was my recruiter, Coach Joe Salave'a. He's a great defensive line coach and so I wanted to go there - and also I just felt like something special was going to happen up there. They had some really good wins, and hopefully I can be able to go up there, if I do commit there, at least help them create something special."

CF.C: How was your visit?
Hunt: "It was awesome. It was fun. I got to know the coaching staff a lot more, and I got to hang out with the players, mainly the defensive line players and the outside linebackers. It was just great to be up there. Pullman, it's beautiful up there. I didn't expect it because a lot of people told me what to expect but it surpassed expectations for sure. It was just beautiful."

CF.C: What kinds of things did those people tell you to expect?
Hunt: "A lot of people who have been there who have also been to Utah State, said to expect it to be like Utah State. I kind of expected it to be flat but it was on the hills...I kind of liked the small-town feel. Wazzu is the main thing in town because there's not an NFL team down there, so you can definitely feel the love up there, and tight community up there."

CF.C: What did you think of the coaching staff, and talk about Mike Leach.
Hunt: "Coach Leach is awesome. He's just kicking back. We talked about books and a lot of stuff. We talked about (things) because I'm going on a mission, so he's really personable and you can really get to know him. Also, Coach Wilson was awesome. All the coaches there were just nice and really got to know you."

CF.C: When are you going on your mission?
Hunt: "I actually work on my papers the first week in January, and then I should be done with my papers in a week or two, and from there on, I just wait for my call. Most likely, I'm actually going to leave two weeks after graduation (from high school)...My mission is two years, so it's just different. It'll be two years and then I'll come home. They usually let football players come home in 22 months, so two months early...I won't be playing football for those two years, so I'll be on my mission and then I'll come back and play in two years."

CF.C: So you enroll when you are done with your mission about when?
Hunt: "Yes, so I'll basically be back, and will start my freshman year, in the fall of 2017."

CF.C: What was your favorite part of your visit to Washington State?
Hunt: "My favorite part was getting to know the people there, like the coaches, teachers, and the players. It was my first out-of-state official visit, so it was just nice to be up there, but my favorite part would have to be the relationships I made, being with the other recruits."

CF.C: How important is it to you to stay "close to home" when making your decision?
Hunt: "It's not that important. I feel like I'll have that support from my family wherever I go. For me, it doesn't matter as long as that school fits me. I'll definitely go whether it's on the East Coast or here on the West Coast. As long as the school fits me, then that's where I'll go."

CF.C: Other than Washington State, what other schools are you seriously considering?
Hunt: "Other than Washington State, right now I'm considering Utah, BYU, Michigan State, and Oregon probably."

CF.C: What sticks out to you most about those schools?
Hunt: "Each school has something really spectacular about them that I really love. Besides Utah and BYU, I haven't really made visits to the other schools, but all the schools have something really special to them, and that's why I'm waiting to make my decision until Signing Day, just because it's been so hard."

CF.C: What's the No. 1 thing about Washington State that sticks out to you?
Hunt: "When I went up there, I really felt the family feel up there, and how serious they were about their football. We got to talk to the athletic director, (Bill Moos), and he's the one who came from Oregon. It was just awesome. It made sense that they're there to win Pac-12 Championships, and hopefully National Championships in the future."

CF.C: Do you have any other visits scheduled?
Hunt: "Yes, I'm going to schedule, pretty soon, my official visit to Michigan State in January. Other than that, I haven't scheduled any."

CF.C: How about in-home visits?
Hunt: "I had one from Utah State, and then BYU came and visited my school along with Utah. Coach Joe from Washington State came down the same week I was supposed to go on my official visit, so it was pretty nice."

CF.C: What did your parents think of the in-home visit from Salave'a?
Hunt: "My parents thought it was awesome, just because he took his time to come down even when we were going to see him over the weekend. They knew Coach Joe because we are from the same area, I was born in the same area, so they were familiar with him. He's family, and it was just awesome."

CF.C: What did your parents think of the school in general?
Hunt: "My dad came up to the official visit with me, and he was just blown away. He also thought it was just going to be on flat land, and more country than it seemed. He liked it a lot, and he liked how tight everything was and how small the community was, but also how big football was. We didn't know what to expect because it was going to be my first out-of-state one."

CF.C: Do you have any other in-home visits scheduled?
Hunt: "Not that I know of."

CF.C: How important is early playing time to you in making your decision, despite that it will likely be a couple years down the road?
Hunt: "Early playing time is pretty important because I feel like, if I do things right, I just want an equal chance and fair shot. I just experienced it in high school. I feel that if I do things the correct way, I can be able to come in and produce early on, but that all depends on me and how hard I work. If I don't get that early playing time like I want, that just means I need to work that much harder. If it happens, that's good, and if it doesn't happen, that means I need to come back and work harder when I come back from my mission. The coaching staff made it clear that they play who is the best, and that's definitely what I wanted to hear. They don't favor any one player, and so that was nice to hear."

CF.C: What's the most important thing to you when picking a school?
Hunt: "The most important thing has to be the coaches and the players I'm going to be with. Ultimately, at the end of the day, I'm going to be with them probably 24/7, the players and even the coaches. Just that defensive line or defensive coach that will help me get to the next level and help develop me as a person, because I know every football player's ultimate dream is to go to the NFL, and that's still mine...As far as education, I feel like school is school. You're going to get educated wherever you go. It just depends on how you take that education."

CF.C: What are you planning on studying in college?
Hunt: "I'm going to study law and English. I'm going to major in English and minor in law."

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