French Camp teacher competes in 46th season of SURVIVOR

FRENCH CAMP, Miss. (WCBI) – The groundbreaking reality TV series SURVIVOR returned for its 46th season. And among the players, are two people from Mississippi, one of them from French Camp.

When Hunter McKnight isn’t in the classroom you can find him creating his own survival games.

“During fall, I spend my afternoons coaching football but during the afternoons during the spring, I just love to spend my afternoons building things,” said McKnight.

The high school teacher was headed to med school before he made a career switch to his true passion of teaching. But his lessons don’t just stay in the classroom.

“I played this big game of SURVIVOR with the kids and had a lot of fun with it. The kids received it super well. It really convinced me maybe it was the Lord’s way of showing me maybe this is something you enjoy and maybe this is something you should be doing,” said McKnight.

But playing SURVIVOR wasn’t enough.

McKnight took his interest in the reality TV show and built his own courses, trivia games, and clubhouse. Each year students get the opportunity to take on McKnight’s version of SURVIVOR.

The winner, well, they get $1,000, a picture on the wall, and bragging rights. And the setup has only grown over the last four years.

“I’ve built these big challenge fields in addition to just building all the challenges. I’ve got these big platforms, all these individual stations, but I have also built a big tribal council tree house with a big ole rope bridge going across to it and a rope bridge to where they vote, to where they draw, let down the staircase,” said McKnight.

As the premier of the 46th season begins to roll out, McKnight said he’s got a whole community of support cheering him on.

“I do this with the kids and now they get to watch me do it on national TV. I joked with them about it and was like ‘I can not just go out there and completely flop and then come back and teach in the classroom because high school kids do not let you forget anything.’ And so they hold it against you, but they have been super sweet and supportive and they have just been very excited about getting to share it with me and I can’t wait to get to share it now with them,” said McKnight.

And as for the outcome…

“Who knows how it’s going to pan out, we will just have to wait and see,” said McKnight.

SURVIVOR’s 46th season will premier on February 28 on CBS at 7 p.m.

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