Auburn RB Jarquez Hunter remains officially undecided on returning, entering NFL Draft

On3 imageby:Justin Hokanson12/19/23

_JHokanson

AUBURN — Jarquez Hunter said on Tuesday that he hasn’t officially made a final decision regarding returning to Auburn or entering the NFL Draft.

“I haven’t decided right now. I’m just focused on the bowl game trying to get past that,” Hunter said. “I look back over the year and see how I developed as a player and how I played, and things I need to work on if I come back.”

Hunter rushed for 865 yards and seven touchdowns this season, bringing his career total to 2,126 rushing yards and 17 touchdowns in three seasons. Hunter plans to play in the Music City Bowl on December 30 against Maryland.

“It’s important to my teammates,” Hunter said. “I’ve fought with them and not playing in the bowl game is a selfish thing to me. We practice all year together, play all year together, just finish with my teammates that I go to war with at practice and finish through the season. I’ve been stuck between…I haven’t had a definite, oh I’m leaving or I’m coming back. It’s just been mixed thoughts.”

Hunter said he hasn’t thought any timeline on a decision, remaining focused on the bowl game.

“We’ll just decide from there,” he said.

Hunter did however speak openly about the potential of Auburn’s offense next season, and seemed to include himself in that picture.

“The run game, we started dominating in the run game. Everybody did a good job and made things happen,” Hunter said of the Tigers’ improvements in the second half of the season. “We just had to go out there and compete. I think next season, the offense is going to be real special and we’re going to go out there and dominate. We have the talent to beat a lot of people and be in the playoff run.”

Hunter topped 90 rushing yards in four of Auburn’s last five games, including topping 100 yards in three of the last five games.

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Hunter was asked about Payton Thorne‘s development and expectations for next season.

“I think beginning of the season, everybody started rocky. The second half of the season, everybody started clicking and started going together. He got better with his reads and progressions, and just kept having fun and playing the game, and controlling the offense.”

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