By Thomas Sellers Jr.
The 2017 football season was the most decorated campaign in Brighton Cardinal history.
The cherry on top came on National Signing Day 2018 with Head Coach Robin Jacobs welcoming friends, family, players, staff, faculty and administrators to the commitment of a quartet of Cardinals to Southeast Missouri State University.
Brighton seniors Aaron Alston, Cameron John, Spencer Cartwright and Jordan John will become Redhawks in Tom Matukewicz’s program.
“I’ve never been around anything like it,” Jacobs said. “It’s a great class. To me this speaks well of Brighton High School as far as the academic part and everything that goes with it. Our academic counselors, we’ve learned a lot about how to get them in school. You’ve got to have this and you’ve got to have that. “They’ve been absolutely awesome from the principal to teachers,” he added. “I don’t want to take much credit for this. There are a lot of people who do this.”
Key contributors on hand in the Brighton Gymnasium lobby today were the parents of brothers Cameron and Jordan, Wendell and Jamie John. Aaron had several family members at the event including his mother Sarita Alston.
Bertha and Anthony Cartwright joined Spencer to celebrate him earning a preferred walk-on status with SEMO. Cartwright is a defensive tackle who overcame injury to make an impact late in the season helping Brighton reach the State Semifinals in Class 5A.
Right by his side was Jordan John. He was able to shut down opposing running attacks by clogging the middle. Jordan also has speed to make tackles on the outside. He is heading to SEMO on an academic scholarship.
His brother Cameron earned an athletic scholarship with outstanding play from the defensive end position. Cameron’s speed rush produced several sacks and tackles for loss. He was an AutoZone Liberty Bowl High School All-Star in 2017.
Also on that team was Aaron Alston as a receiver. But his defensive work at safety earned Alston an All-State selection. He was snatched up on scholarship by Matukewicz.
Matukewicz just wrapped up his fourth season as Redhawks head coach in 2017. Matukewicz has guided his teams to three wins over nationally-ranked Football Championship Subdivision opponents, the most of any head coach in program history.
The Redhawks play the NCAA Division II’s Ohio Valley Conference.