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Home > Jonathon Hackett 2017 Higgins Recipient

Jonathon Hackett -
 2017 Kevin Higgins College
Scholarship Grant Recipient

San Diego, CA (December 31, 2017) - Grit and determination led 2017 Kevin Higgins College Scholarship recipient, Jonathon Hackett, to receive a rugby scholarship to one of the top programs in the nation. Hackett had always dreamed of competing at the highest level for football and wrestling, but when scholarship options drew short, he turned to rugby. His football and wrestling background allowed for an easy transition into rugby and molded him into a noteworthy player. Although his rugby experience might be limited, his opportunities are endless. Jonathon will be the first in his family to attend a four-year university, all thanks to rugby.

Although 2017 marked the beginning of Hackett’s rugby career, it will certainly not be his last. It wasn’t long before he earned his way onto the starting side for De La Salle High School Rugby and was a part of the undefeated Division I Northern California Championship team. In his first season of rugby, his raw talent was so impressive that he was recruited by Saint Mary’s College to join their national championship program. Jonathon is eager to enhance his rugby IQ while at Saint Mary’s and work his way into a starting spot. He dreams of playing at the highest level and one day becoming a rugby role model for children to look up to and be inspired to never give up.

“It is hard to express on paper what type of young man Jonathon is,” said De La Salle Rugby Head Coach, Derek Holmberg. “His upside on the pitch and in life are through the roof. He was a mentor to the underclassmen, one of the hardest working players on the field, and a high character person in every situation. He has the ability and mental toughness to be a great college player and I would not be shocked in the slightest if I saw him lacing up his boots for the U.S.A. Eagles one day.”

He graduated from De La Salle High School in Concord, California in 2017. He was a four-year member of the De La Salle High School football and wrestling teams and was selected as the school’s 2017 Athlete of the Year. He was also involved in various clubs and volunteered for projects such as the Clayton Valley Garden Club, Clayton 4th of July Parade, Clayton Library, and served as an algebra tutor. As he continues his education as Saint Mary’s College in Moraga, California, he intends to major in biochemistry with intentions of attending medical school. He aspires to work for the John Muir Network, specializing in pediatrics.

“I am truly blessed and thankful that this sport has humbled me and given me a new purpose,” said Hackett.

His head coach at Saint Mary’s College, former U.S. Eagle and U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame inductee, Tim O’Brien, has been very impressed with his young player and sees similarities in Hackett with his former teammate Kevin Higgins.

“Jonathon Hackett as a Kevin Higgins Scholarship applicant is interesting. Minus the hair color, I see many similarities as he embarks on his rugby journey. Starting with a powerful smile and a huge embrace of those around him, Jonathon will run around, over and through you in the blink of an eye. With only five games of rugby under his belt in high school, he projects to soar to ‘Higgy like’ heights. Those heights cover a handful of buckets, on and off the field, which match the LaSallian core principals and community development process at De La Salle High School and Saint Mary’s College:

  1. Concern for the poor & social justice
  2. Faith in the presence of God
  3. Quality Education
  4. Respect for all persons

"Lump in High School Athlete of the Year as a Football and Wrestling participant at powerhouse De La Salle and this kid checks many of the boxes. Sounds a bit corny I suppose but looking back at Kevin’s life he was always the guy making certain everyone else was okay before he moved forward. And, once he did move forward, he was a beast…identical to this emerging star.”

Congratulations Jonathon, on being selected as a 2017 Kevin Higgins College Scholarship recipient.

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