Student turns sports into jobs

Student turns sports into jobs

Sophomore Jonathan Hutchens works in recruiting for the football team while also working at The Bear Trap. CW | Pete Pajor

Laura Testino

For Jonathan Hutchens, a sophomore majoring in exercise science, life revolves around Bryant-Denny Stadium.

Hutchens works in recruiting for the Crimson Tide football team and as a bar-back at The Bear Trap, a rooftop restaurant and bar that overlooks the stadium. His busy work schedule requires staying at The Bear Trap until 2 or 3 a.m. and then returning home to sleep for a few hours before starting his 8 a.m. shift at the recruiting office on many occasions. He balances working with taking 14 credit hours at the University.

“Right now it’s going okay. I’m just getting the first taste of it,” Hutchens said. “But, it’s rough. I was a little exhausted the first half-week of school.”

He began working as a bar-back this past spring, and his position in the recruiting office started over the summer. He hopes to use his new job in recruiting to propel him toward a future career in coaching.

While playing in a soccer game during his sophomore year of high school, Hutchens collided with another player and incurred a skull fracture that ended his athletic career.

“It was rough right there when it all started, and I couldn’t play or do anything, really,” he said. “I’ve grown to see the other side of it, and find passion in it in a different way.”

Adrian Leach, owner at The Bear Trap, said Hutchens’ interest in sports is obvious.

“That’s all he talks about. I’m a big baseball guy, and [Hutchens] is obviously into football,” Leach said.

Leach said he sees Hutchens as a hard-working employee.

“[Hutchens] has been great. He’s done everything I’ve ever asked him to do,” Leach said. “He has a lot of enthusiasm, and is a vibrant, good kid.”

Coworker Joel Reaves said Hutchens fits in well with the small family of bartenders and bar-backs at The Bear Trap.

“[Hutchens] realizes what’s going on and what’s needed,” Reaves said.

Because of The Bear Trap’s close proximity to the stadium, gameday cheers can be heard in real time before playing through the television.

Although he grew up rooting for Tennessee, Hutchens said he became a devoted fan of the Crimson Tide during his freshman year of high school. His recruiting position will keep him inside Bryant-Denny Stadium, rather than watching from afar during home games.

Hutchens said he and other recruiters are interested to see how the quarterback battle will unfold this Saturday.

“It’s going to be fun to watch how our defense plays,” he said.