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Local

Honoring Coach Jenkins: NHS Booster Club selling DVDs of the 1987 football season

Cardinal fans will be able to take home videos of the 1987 football season on DVD. 

The Newton Athletic Booster Club was approached by a member of the ‘87 team wanting to partner for a fundraiser for high school athletics. Members of the team had acquired old films of the entire season and worked with a production company to convert them to DVDs.

The 1987 season was the first John Jenkins took to the playoffs as head coach. Jenkins, the winningest coach in Cardinals history, died on Feb. 8 after a long struggle with dementia. So while the DVDs are a way for people to be able to take games home with them, it is also a way to honor Jenkins’ contributions to Cardinals football. 

“The late 1980s were truly the golden era of Newton football. The football players felt it was a privilege to play and the entire community would pack the stadium on Friday nights to watch. The entire town was dressed in red and black every Friday to represent the Newton Cardinals,” Julie Kain, co-president of the Newton High School Booster Club, said. 

The DVDs present a way for those who weren’t able to witness the excitement of that time to experience it on film. Kain describes it as a step back in time to remember and honor the legacy of Newton’s football history. 

It is also a glimpse of what Jenkins meant to the football team. 

“Coach Jenkins was so much more than just a coach to his players. His motto was CFLA — Character First, Last and Always. He instilled that in his players, and, most importantly, was a true role model of having good character on and off the field,” Kain said. 

Kain said those words were ingrained in the players who Jenkins coached, but was also felt through the community. Jenkins, as well as other coaches Dick Stiles, Ed Ergenbright and Darren Hurt, helped shape those boys into the men they are today. 

“I think the players are grateful for the opportunity to play for these coaches and this is just a small way to honor and thank them for the part they played in their lives,” Kain said.

The DVDs will be available to purchase during the homecoming festivities as well as the remaining home games of the season. They are available at the booster club shack by the gate of H.A. Lynn Stadium. For those interested in purchasing the DVDs but are not able to attend the games, they can message the NHS Booster Club through its Facebook page or contact Kain directly at kain.julie@gmail.com to get a copy.

The set includes three DVDs and has all games of the regular season and the playoff games at the price of $50. All of the sale proceeds will be given directly to the NHS athletic department. This DVD sale comes at an important time as the club’s fundraising has taken a hit due to the effects of COVD-19. 

“Our memberships are down and our opportunity to sell merchandise has been limited with the cancellation of the fall kickoff in August and one less home game with the revised season schedule. We are so grateful for the opportunity to use this as a fundraiser,” Kain said. 

The sale of the DVDs certainly helps support current activities at the high school while also paying tribute to a man who meant so much to the school and the city of Newton. The class of 1987 didn’t want to leave out a personal touch to the Jenkins family. 

“The class of ‘87 also acquired film of one of Coach Jenkins’ college football games. They had that converted into a DVD as well and presented that to Jo (his wife) to have,” Kain said. 

Contact Pam Pratt at
641-792-3121 ext. 6530 or pampratt@newtondailynews.com

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