Posted on November 21, 2012 at 10:16 PM
UNIVERSITY PARK - SMU defensive end Margus Hunt has blocked more kicks than anyone in NCAA history. His record stands at 17. That's 10 blocked field goals and 7 PATs.
Before football, he won gold medals for Estonia in both the shotput and the discus in the 2006 World Junior Championships. He switched to football four years ago and June Jones liked what he saw early.
"If he stays healthy, in four years he'll be a first or second round draft pick," head coach June Jones said then.
He's become a force on defense, but there's another side to this 6-8, 275 pound defensive end.
Last year, Hunt starting taking a piano class last fall.
"It doesn't seem normal in this culture and yet even in the days of the Greeks," says Sam Holland, Music director of SMU's school of music."They believed the two main components of a person’s education were to make music and to be in athletics."
Hunt soon discovered that there was another student on campus, also from his home country of Estonia.
"It's very special," said Hando Nahkur, Hunt's friend. "When I got here, a few months later, I think it was October or November, I heard that there was another guy on campus from Estonia. I was like, 'where is he?'"
The two became instant friends. Nahkur is a concert pianist studying under SMU's artist in residence. When they get together, they play music.
"We get to speak Estonian," Hunt says. "I don't get to do that a lot. I talk to my mom every Sunday. But knowing him, and knowing that he's here, it’s definitely helped me a lot."
Hunt still has a lot to learn about classic music but he may be the only player on the SMU football team who listens to it as well.