Hunter Murfitt, a junior nose guard and offensive tackle for the Cascade Christian Cougars, is an inconspicuous figure, but he knows his performance makes a difference in whether or not his football team succeeds or fails on Saturday nights.
Murfitt, a two-way starter, said his No. 1 priority is to ensure the health of junior quarterback Jaelin Goldsmith.
“If I let my man get by me, Jaelin is going to get killed,” Murfitt said. “If he gets hit hard, it’s on me.
“What goes through my head before every play is that I have to make this block, because if I don’t, it is going to impact the team in a bad way,” he said. “I’m worried about my brothers out there.”
Murfitt said nose guard may not glamorous, but the game is won or lost in the trenches.
“As soon as the ball is snapped, you have to get a push to put pressure on the quarterback,” he said. “If you don’t, the quarterback will have all day to throw. If it’s a run play and you don’t get any penetration, the other team’s running back can potentially just run up the middle on you for big yards.”
The Herald recently asked Murfitt a few questions about his life away from the football field.
TH: What is your dream vacation spot?
HM: I really want to go to China. I want to see the Great Wall.
TH: What is your biggest pet peeve?
HM: It is when people don’t try their hardest in whatever they’re doing.
TH: What is something unique about you?
HM: I used to do gymnastics. It helps my balance on the football field.
TH: Where do you see yourself in five years?
HM: I want to play college football. It is something I’m working toward and is one of my goals in life.
TH: What kind of music are you listening to the most in your iPod right now?
HM: Right now I’m listening to a lot of rock music.
TH: Who is your pick to win the Super Bowl?
HM: The San Francisco 49ers. ... They have worked hard and have lots of young players on their squad.
TH: Who was your idol as you grew up?
HM: My dad. We went through a lot of tough times when I was younger, and he would always persevere. He taught me to never stop trying.
TH: If you could pick one person to go to dinner with, who would it be?
HM: Russell Wilson. Statistically and height wise, he’s not supposed to be in the NFL. I want to know what made him choose to pursue football over baseball, and what motivated him to make that decision.