Cambridge, Mass. (June 10) – J.J. Hunter has been named as the MIT director of track and field and cross country/track and field head coach and physical education and wellness instructor, as announced by Dr. G. Anthony Grant, MIT's director of athletics/DAPER department head. Hunter comes to MIT from Division III Kenyon College (OH), where he served as the track and field head coach for the 2020-21 season.
"I am excited to welcome J.J. to the MIT DAPER family to direct our cross country and track and field programs," said Dr. Grant. "We have experienced a rich history of success under the leadership of Coach Taylor and I am confident that the energy, enthusiasm and coaching experience that J.J. possesses will enable him to continue to build upon the level of sustained success that our student-athletes, coaches and alumni have achieved for decades. I am very optimistic about the future of MIT cross country and track and field."
Prior to his time at Kenyon, Hunter served as an assistant coach at the University of Pennsylvania from 2016-20, where he worked with the men's sprints, hurdles, horizontal jumps and multi-events. Named as the 2019 USTFCCCA Indoor Regional Assistant Coach of the Year, he coached eight NCAA East Regional qualifiers, eight Academic All-America honorees and 18 All-Ivy performers. His athletes earned nine Ivy League championships in sprints and hurdles and earned 23 top-10 marks at the University of Pennsylvania.
"I want to thank Dr. Grant for the opportunity to lead this storied program," said Hunter. "I am humbled to be selected to continue the tradition of excellence built by Coach Halston Taylor. MIT is truly a special place and I look forward to engaging with the team, coaching staff, alumni and community as we begin the process of building towards our next championship."
His coaching history also includes stops as an assistant coach at the University of Miami (FL), Florida International University and The College of New Jersey. At Miami, Hunter coached with the men's and women's teams from 2004-07 and prior to that, he was at Florida International for the 2003-04 season and guided four school-record holders to go along with 15 All-Sun Belt Conference Team selections. Hunter's first coaching experience came at the Division III level at TCNJ, where he was an assistant from 2001-03. During his team, he coached 24 NCAA All-Americans, 23 NJAC Conference Champions, seven conference record holders and a pair of USATF Junior National qualifiers in the 200m and 400m.
Hunter earned his Bachelor of Science from La Salle University with a major in biology and a minor in music history. He went on to the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, where he graduated with his Master of Business Administration. He also competed professionally for Shore AC and Nike Atlantic Coast Club, was a three-time USATF Outdoor Championship qualifier and posted PR's of 10.10w and 10.25 in the 100m.