On April 12, it was announced that the RedHawks would be getting some much needed help at the guard position with the addition of 6-foot-5, 200-pound senior Darweshi Hunter.
Hunter’s decision to come play for the RedHawks was fueled by multiple factors.
“It was a few things,” Hunter said. “It’s close to home, I trust in what Coach Steele has going over there at Miami. Of course, we played them last season; I like what they did over there. They beat us once. We beat them once. Both games were competitive, and I enjoy the MAC conference, so that also played a factor.”
Born in 2000, in Phoenix, Arizona, to Dwayne and Natasha Hunter, Darweshi attended high school only 22 miles away from Oxford at Princeton High School on the outskirts of Cincinnati. There, he averaged 17.5 points per game and 1.5 assists as a senior.
Hunter played his first year of college at the Division II HBCU Central State in Wilberforce, Ohio, in 2019-20. He averaged 20.7 points, 6.1 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game, earning all Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference First Team and Freshman of the Year honors. He then transferred to Weber State in Utah, where he averaged 2.9 points, 1.0 assists and 0.6 rebounds per game as a sophomore.
Hunter also described what the RedHawks’ faithful fans can expect this upcoming season.
“As far as me, I’m gonna play hard every night,” Hunter said. “I can definitely shoot the ball, so a lot of threes are gonna be going in. I’m good on defense, so a lot of good defense, and as a team I expect us to win the whole thing, win the regular season and the MAC and then go to the NCAA tournament. This is my last season of college basketball, so I'm trying to go all out.”
After his disappointing sophomore year, Hunter transferred to Northern Illinois, where he spent the next two seasons. Though he had another subpar year as a junior, he followed it up by averaging a solid 9.0 points, 3.0 assists and 0.5 rebounds per game in 30 games played and eight starts last season. He also shot 42.1% from three, which put him in the top 150 in the country. Considering that Miami shot 32% from three as a team last season, which was 225th in the country, Hunter's shooting should provide a much-needed boost.
Miami Head Coach Travis Steele is happy to have Hunter on his side now.
“Having played against him, which was great for us, seeing him twice live as well as watching several game films over the course of the year preparing for Northern Illinois, Darweshi is going to bring a veteran maturity to our team that we really need,” Steele said. “He’s a guy that can really impact both ends of the floor. Obviously he’s a prolific shooter. You look at his numbers, he was one of the best shooters in the league last year, and he’s 6 '5” and strong.”
Steele is also excited about the potential of Hunter’s leadership, especially with a promising group of five recruits coming in for the 2022-23 season.
“He’s been through college basketball practices, he’s lifted, he’s been through some tough losses, he has seen some good wins, he has seen a little bit of everything, and I think that goes a long way in college basketball,” Steele said. “We are bringing in five freshmen, and our guys are going to be very young, but we have a good blend with some older guys as well, and I think you need that in the current landscape of college basketball.”
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Hunter also hopes to keep playing after graduation.
“I’m definitely going to try and continue my playing career.” Hunter said. “Hopefully the NBA of course but also overseas, just trying to keep playing and make some money from it.
In his two games played against the RedHawks this past season, Hunter scored 14 points and nine points respectively, with one loss and one win. His increase in production year after year is no doubt a positive sign for Miami, whose youth combined with Hunter’s veteran leadership can only mean there are brighter days ahead for the RedHawks.