MISSOULA – It only took Hunter Mayginnes a week to transition from offensive lineman to first-team after being transferred from Washington state over the summer.
The runner-up ran with luck and started all six games at left guard, solidifying one of the positions Montana had to fill after his last full season in 2019. He was even named the team’s player of the match in the locker room after the victory. on Dixie State on Oct.9 in Missoula.
Mayginnes sat down with 406mtsports.com to catch up on his first season with the Griz as they prepare to play in Idaho at 5:30 p.m. MT on Saturday at Kibbie Dome in Moscow, Idaho.
Q: It’s probably weird calling yourself a sophomore because it’s your fourth year of college, so you must be about to graduate, right?
A: “I have another semester to do. I specialize in communication studies. I might be thinking about getting into the navy or the army as an officer after football. My grandfather was in the Navy from 18 to 24 and then joined the LA County Sheriff’s Department. So it would be pretty cool if I could do something similar to him.
Q: What do you like about the Army or Navy that you want to get into?
A: “Structure. I think structure is a huge thing in my life. As long as I have structure in my life, my life is pretty certain and pretty clear of what I want to do. Football is probably the same as navy or army. I know it’s not as hard as it could be with football, even if (head) coach (Bobby) Hauck does it. Just the structure to have a certain schedule every day and you pretty much know your schedule for the next six months It would be nice to have structure and hard realities, I think that would be good for me.
Q: As for football, how did it end up in Washington State after high school in Arizona?
A: “I joined the state of Arizona from June 2017 to early February, late January 2018, then they took my scholarship out and I had nowhere to go. I received offers from other schools, but I didn’t think they were a good fit for me. I ended up in Washington State as an extra but as a blue shirt. I ended up getting a scholarship there as a real freshman during fall camp.
Q: I’ve heard of a red shirt and a gray shirt, but what is a blue shirt?
A: “You show up as an extra during the summer and prove to the coaches that you deserve a scholarship. Then the scholarships for the following year open when the first day of fall camp begins, so they will just give me one of the scholarships for the next class. I was a class of 2018 graduate, but they gave me a class of 2019 scholarship. ”
Q: You play there on special teams, but what motivated your decision to transfer?
A: “I think the biggest decision was knowing my worth and my personal worth and knowing that I could be in a better position personally. It was bad to go there. No hard feelings for the coaching staff there and the players. My brother is there so it was hard to leave him too but just make sure I had the best opportunity for me and give me the best opportunity to do it. This is why I came here.
Q: When you entered the transfer portal, what type of school did you hear about and what separated Montana?
A: “I have heard a lot of things ranging from FBS to FCS. I think Montana just stuck in my head because (offensive line) coach (Chad) Germer recruited me in high school. I introduced myself to him when he came to Arizona. We started talking about it a bit, and he gave me his map and information. Nothing really happened after that. Some big schools started hitting me. I think he knew maybe I was going to be like a guy from Mountain West or Pac-12.
Q: What did it mean for you to win a scholarship here and have another school that believes in you?
A: “It means everything to me. I know my parents and family sacrificed so much for me just to grow up as I grew up: clothes on my back, food in my belly, a roof over my head. What I wanted to do for them was just make sure I was providing it to them. My sense of duty is just to make sure that my school is paid, that my food is paid, that I can pay for my own accommodation, that I can pay for my own clothes, that I can pay for my own gas. Just a kind of unloading from their shoulders. Making them happy is also a great thing.
Q: So you arrived before this season, and how was the transition to a new offense?
A: “I wouldn’t say it was too difficult. We have a great team of coaches and players here to help and train me. It was a pretty easy transition because of it. I’m just learning all the pieces. You’re going to have different trainers telling you different things about where your feet should be, where your head should be, where your hands should be, how your body position should be, your lunges, your positions. It’s just different everywhere you go.
Q: You’ve started every game this year, so were you even surprised at how it turned out?
A: “No, not really. I think the coaches and the other players have really put me in a great position to do well. I have to thank Coach Germer and Coach Hauck. They put me, as well as the other offensive linemen, in good positions and that’s why we’re playing so well.
Q: Since you’ve been here, what does it take to play offensive line in Montana and live up to the Dominant Offensive Line Attitude (DOLA) mantra?
A: “Hard work, courage and tremendous effort. On top of that, just make sure you’re as close to perfect as you can get with your technique. Just make sure you’re still working hard. There should be no excuses and there should be no setbacks. It’s always about moving forward and making sure we’re always improving.