Northmont’s Blind Side

The Jalen Hinton Story


Offensive lineman senior Jalen Hinton runs off the field after blocking for the quarterback (courtesy of Northmont Hudl).

Justin Artz, Staff Writer

As an offensive lineman, senior Jalen Hinton is used to being overlooked. However, Hinton started at left tackle for three years and never missed a game.

“Football has helped me in life,” said Hinton. “It shows me unity and trust.”

Hinton’s position was crucial to the offense for many reasons.

“My role is very important. Without me, the quarterback can’t pass and the running back can’t run,” said Hinton. “Everyone’s important. If everyone doesn’t do their job then the whole team falls apart.”

Varsity football coach and social studies teacher Mr. Anthony Broering has been extremely impressed with Hinton, praising him as a player and a person.

“Jalen’s nickname is Big Mountain. He is a three-year starter at left tackle. He is very skilled with his feet and his long reach. He is a quiet leader, but his teammates listen when he speaks because he is a powerful speaker,” said Broering. “The best thing about Jalen isn’t his skill as an athlete, but him as a person. He always has a smile on his face and is just a great kid.”

Academics has played a key role in Jalen’s high school success. He has several scholarship offers to play college ball, including Ashland University and Ohio Dominican University.

“He always had his homework done, he participated and always asked questions in class,” said science teacher Ms. Stephanie Meade.

Hinton was part of the POPPs program at the high school, Parents of Past Players. His “foster” mom is Ms. Beth Detrick, a teacher at Northmont High School, who had three sons who played football.

“Ms. Detrick is my motivation,” said Hinton. “She has helped me so much, and is someone I can always talk to.”

Detrick has been at every one of his games and, to him, that’s the support he needed. She even had a jersey made with his name on it. The two hit it off at their very first POPPs meeting. Hinton later wrote a letter, bringing Detrick to tears.

“After reading the letter I could tell we’d have a bond that would never be broken. The letter mentioned that since I’d be his POPP’s parent, we’d be like family which is true,” said Detrick. “I think the world of Jalen and I know that we will always be close.”

Detrick believes Hinton plays a very important role on the field and doesn’t get recognition for it.

“He plays a very important position at left tackle, but I know that he doesn’t get a lot of credit, because that is not one of the prestigious positions. But he’s okay with that because he’s a team player,” said Detrick.

Hinton is not only loved by his “foster mom,” but his own parents and his teammates as well. Hinton credits his mother and father with taking him on college visits and going out of their way to ensure that is future is bright.

“I love them so much,” said Hinton.

His teammates, likewise, have created a bond with the 6’4″ senior.

“Jalen is a physical and great football player. He’s also very funny and a fun guy to hang out with,” said junior Savonne Cvetnic, a fullback. “He’s like an older brother to me and the whole team loves him. We’re all gonna miss him when he leaves for college.”

Hinton, who was given Honorable Mention as an All-Ohio Division I football player for 2017, said he enjoyed playing more than ever this year because he had supporters in the stand.

“It’s an adrenaline rush to have motivators in the stand,” said Hinton. “It’s a great feeling, but it is also nerve-racking because you don’t want to disappoint your supporters.”

Hinton’s plans include studying pharmacology in college and playing college football. And, he will have Detrick, his parents, and his former teammates watching along the way.