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In a year of change for Old Dominion, many transfers have come into the program, but the most unique might be Maryland transfer offensive lineman Tyran Hunt.
Over his three years at Maryland, Hunt appeared in two games after redshirting as a freshman. But while Hunt can be a beast on the field, he is equally as good as a chef in the kitchen.
“My favorite dish is baked mac 'n cheese,” Hunt says. “I can make it with my eyes closed.”
Not all his off-field kitchen adventures have been good, however, as Hunt nearly burnt down his apartment while trying to perfect a certain culinary masterpiece.
“I had a great friend who I had cooked chicken cordon bleu with,” Hunt says. “ I was trying to be spontaneous and cook it on my own. I put it in the oven, baked it at the perfect temperature and everything. I went to check on it and it wasn't done in the middle, so I turned up the oven a little bit, and the next thing I knew I smelled smoke. I literally almost burnt down my apartment. I haven't made chicken cordon bleu since, but hopefully, I'll get back to it.”
Hunt still hasn’t attempted the chicken cordon bleu again, but has expanded his interests in the kitchen since arriving at ODU, including getting fancy with a famous Northern Italian dish, putting his own spin on it to help fuel him on the field.
“I would say my best dish is alfredo,” Hunt remarked. “I put all the protein in it. I put bacon, shrimp, chicken, and make the alfredo sauce from scratch. I take pride in that.”
While Hunt, a graduate of Southampton High, has a great love of football, he also developed his love in the kitchen early on in his life.
“Growing up, in this area, all my family is from down south so there was a lot of southern cooking,” Hunt said. “It’s been in my blood, and I’m a big guy so I love to eat. I’m always in the kitchen.”
Of the things Hunt hasn’t cooked yet, an international item is on the top of his list to try and perfect.
“I see all these Tik-Tok videos of people making sushi and stuff, so I want to try it,” Hunt exclaimed. “I recently got into sushi and I’ve been trying places.”
With such a wide range of interests, Hunt hopes to open doors for himself if he can make it to the NFL, and even after, potentially.
“I would love to get into cooking,” Hunt said. My mom every now and then will give me a recipe to try on my own and walk me through it. If I’m fortunate enough to go to the NFL, hopefully, I'll get to be around some good culinary people and get right in the kitchen. Just for myself, if I went to the NFL, I wouldn’t even need a personal chef because I could be my own chef.”
Hunt, who committed to Maryland as a three-star back in 2017, transferred into ODU last December and since then, Hunt has felt at home.
“My teammates and I were just talking about this,” Hunt remarked. “It didn't take too long to get acclimated. I fit right in and we just kept pushing. These guys on this team have embraced me from day one and I never felt like an outsider or was out of my element. This is probably one of the best decisions I’ve made.”
Prior to coming to Old Dominion, Hunt had seen the work of Head Coach Ricky Rahne first hand, as his Maryland squads lined up against Rahne while the Monarchs head coach was on the sidelines at Penn State.
That familiarity helped Hunt land at Old Dominion once Hunt decided to leave Maryland last October.
“One of the main reasons for me committing here was knowing that the offense is efficient,” Hunt said. “These coaches really know what they are doing schematically and are great people on and off the field. Honestly, they are all together well-rounded people and that was one of the biggest influences on me committing here.
“Coming in, I told coach from day one I was just going to play my role, and work hard,” Hunt said. “Since day one, I’ve noticed a team that has been hungry from the jump. Initially not being able to play a season, you see that hunger and that want and passion in these guys.”
While the entire team has made Hunt feel at home in his new home, a few guys have been key to his acclimation in Norfolk.
“Three guys, first and foremost, Isaac Weaver,” Hunt said. “He is a great leader and is always somebody I can talk to beyond football. Just being older guys and having that perspective helps a lot.”
“Another guy I talk to a lot is Marcus Haynes,” Hunt remarked. “He was my roommate when I first got here so we would talk, he would always give me that perspective of a guy who has been here since day one. We talk about how we are doing, mental health, and all that.
“One of my favorite guys is Santana Saunders, ”Hunt added. “He is a young guy but he is so driven. I love his attitude too, how he attacks everything.”
With two years of eligibility left, Hunt will be a key ingredient once ODU gets its season cooking if Rahne and staff are going to cook up another trip to a bowl game for the Monarchs.
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