On National Signing Day, the 2022 top-rated high school recruit in the nation flipped the college world on its head. Travis Hunter was “crystal balled” to go to Florida State, and he had other top-tier college football programs on his list. Yet, that didn’t deter him from his mission to make a lasting impact on the game. Deion “Prime Time” Sanders hopes to take his Jackson State football team to a whole new level this season. Adding the most explosive and dominant two-way player in the class of 2022 is a start. Now Hunter is looking to cement his legacy and pave the way for future prospects to take the HBCU route. Let’s dive into who Hunter is and what his impact means to college football!
The Impact of Coach Prime
Since Sanders took over the head football coaching job at Jackson State University in 2020, he’s done nothing but change the culture. Instilling his brand, idea, and mindset – “I BELIEVE” – was the first step toward positive change. Prime also wanted to make a significant impact in the recruiting game. By bringing in his son Shedeur Sanders – a four-star QB recruit – Prime wanted to make the roster as competitive as possible. Shedeur immediately separated himself from the rest by earning the respect of his fellow players and solidifying the starting QB position.
Coach Prime knows how to develop and teach the game of football to his players. He also shows no favoritism. He challenges Shedeur by holding him to a higher standard than most on and off the field. As a result, Shedeur won the “Jerry Rice” award for FCS Freshman of the Year. Coach Prime won the “Eddie Robinson” award for FCS Coach of the Year in 2021. Ultimately, they accomplished the goal of winning the SWAC conference championship. Jackson State University also broke the FCS attendance record that year by an average of 42,000 fans each game. It’s safe to say that Coach Prime has made a significant impact on the entire culture of Jackson State and HBCUs. But he wasn’t satisfied as his next move was the biggest of them all!
Travis Hunter’s Decision
With a rating of 0.99 (247 Composite) and 100 (247 Sports), 5-star recruit Travis Hunter is one of the most gifted HS recruits in recent history. Standing at 6’1” and weighing 165 lbs, Hunter has long limbs paired with superb athleticism and a high football IQ. Hunter’s opponents stood no chance against him throughout his high school campaign. As an elite cornerback, Hunter had 111 tackles, 4 TFLs, 18 pass breakups, two FFs, three FRs, two pick-sixes, and 19 INTs… that’s not all! Hunter also rushed 29 times for 158 yards and two TDs, while racking up a whopping 3,807 and 46 TDs on 263 receptions! A true baller on both sides of the football.
Hunter’s name was at the top of every Power 5 program’s list – including Deion Sanders’s alma mater, Florida State University. It was predicted by scouting/crystal ball experts that Hunter would become a Seminole when it was all finished. On National Signing Day, Hunter had other plans in mind. With Georgia, Auburn, and Florida State narrowed down as his final choices, Hunter pulled off the ‘unthinkable’ by choosing Jackson State University as his school of choice.
Unknowingly to Hunter, the magnitude of his decision would change the recruiting game forever. Possibly paving the direction for future HS school star athletes. It was understandable that Hunter’s commitment to JSU would cause a fiasco in the college football world, especially for Florida State fans. Nonetheless, Coach Prime landed the biggest recruit that the modern age of college football has ever seen!
The decision was clear to Hunter, and he wanted to leave his legacy and impact the game like no other. “I look forward to working with the iconic Deion Sanders, and especially with my fellow Tigers. Along with Coach Prime, they have made me feel like I’m already part of the team. Like I’m home. And I can’t wait to welcome the next class of top athletes into the family of HBCUs.” Hunter’s signing is just the beginning of something special for HBCUs all over the nation.
Travis Hunter’s Athletic Profile
As the saying goes, “it’s not about the size of the dog in the fight; it’s about the size of the fight in the dog!” Hunter has that mentality as he plays more physically and dominant than his 165-pound frame. According to 247Sports, Hunter scored the highest on ball skills (10) than any other skill used on the football field. Hunter’s elite athleticism and ball skills were displayed in the Jackson State spring game.
Hunter is a two-way starter – both as a receiver and cornerback. His ability to both track and defend the ball effortlessly is truly phenomenal. As a result, Hunter capped off his spring performance with two TDs and two INTs – a glimpse of what is to come this season. Hunter also has a prolific background in basketball – making his movements and abilities very difficult to predict. His ability to read and react to the ball is unmatched – giving him the ultimate competitive edge against his opponent.
What To Expect This Season
Coach Prime’s brand and impact are turning the tide in college football in a big way – not even Nick Saban can stop what’s coming. Hunter is set to make history with Jackson State both on and off the field. There is no limit or ceiling to Hunter’s capabilities as a player. Yet, there is still a lot of work to be done and challenges to overcome for Hunter along the way!
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