By: Cierra Putman
ODESSA - A champion at Permian High, All-American in College and NFL player - Mojo fans are saying goodbye to Daryl Hunt, a man they say was a star both on and off the field.
Family and friends of former Permian football star Daryl Hunt say the fact he's no longer here is starting to sink in. Hunt died unexpectedly on Friday of a heart attack while jogging in Houston.
During his 53 years on this earth, Hunt found the spotlight as a college and NFL football star, but before that he was a Panther right here in West Texas.
"I guess most importantly, he was fine young man," Former Permian High School Head Football Coach, John Wilkins said. "(He was) a guy who smiled a lot. The kind of player that others rallied around, and he was a leader, well one of the leaders on our team."
In fact, Hunt was the first African-American to play football at Permian High School. Wilkins says he remembers first meeting Hunt as a young, tall kid.
While Hunt was a great athlete, Wilkins says there was more to him than that.
"He was kind of guy that just radiated likeable," Wilkins said. "(He was) always willing to do whatever it takes in order to be the best."
After a spectacular career as a tight end and linebacker at Permian, Hunt went on to play for the Oklahoma Sooners and eventually the Houston Oilers.
NewsWest Nine also spoke with Hunt's mother still lives in town. She says the funeral will take place in Odessa at Sunset Memorial Gardens, but they are still ironing out the details.