Saturday, Sept. 5, was supposed to be the day.
Conor Hunt would have been suited up for his first game in a Georgetown uniform, ready to take the field as a freshman kicker and punter against the Marist Red Foxes, a team the Hoyas had crushed the previous year, 43-3.
It’s a day every incoming college football player dreams about. But for the former Hawaii Prep player, the dream will have to wait.
Georgetown is a member of the Division I Patriot League, which canceled football and all other fall sports in July due to the coronavirus pandemic, ending the season for the Hoyas and Hunt before it could begin.
“I was pretty devastated,” Hunt said. “I was really sad for a couple of hours, because I was really peaking in football and nutrition, and I was ready to go to camp and I was ready to show my coaches and all my teammates what I was doing all summer.”
Georgetown also moved all of its classes online, keeping Hunt on the Big Island for the foreseeable future. But now that he’s moved passed the initial shock of the news, Hunt is ready to use this time to continue to improve as a player.
“The way I see it, I now have more time to focus on my craft and become bigger, stronger, and healthier,” Hunt said. “And when the time does come to show up and play football, I’ll be more than ready.”
Hunt said while he waits, he has been working out in his garage, focusing on weight lifting and nutrition to keep himself on track for the return of college football.
“Just recently my nutrition plan changed drastically because I wasn’t able to gain as much muscle mass, but now that I’m eating the right foods and the certain amount of macros, I’ve been feeling a lot better and seeing results more,” Hunt said. “Nutrition will be an every day thing. I’ll be tracking all my foods and making sure I get enough calories and the right kind of nutrition in my body.
“I will still plan to do football things as well. I won’t do as much as usual now that I have enough time in between, but I’ll be lifting, kicking, and eating right and working hard in my online classes.”
Hunt played football and soccer at HPA for three years, and in his senior year he was named an All-BIIF football selection, as well as the BIIF Division II player of the year in soccer. Hunt led Ka Makani to win the HHSAA Division II boys soccer championship in February.
His former teammates who are still at HPA are in the same boat as Hunt — HPA and all other BIIF schools will be without a fall football season due to the pandemic. Hunt said his advice to any HPA football players is to keep working on improving, even while away from the games, practice and fans.
“One thing that my Georgetown coach says is ‘control the controllables,’” Hunt said. “You can’t control having a football season, but you can control getting better for the next one. Get in working out on your own time. You have to have the self discipline to be able to get better on your own time without people watching.”
Georgetown and the Patriot League hasn’t announced if football will resume in the spring, but Hunt said if they do, he will be ready.
“I’m just looking forward to being able to show everyone watching and everyone who has supported me what I’ve been doing,” Hunt said. “The hard work will pay off. I just want to make my teammates and coaches proud of what I can do.”