When Jonathan Hodgin found he was going to have a son a little more than 18 years ago, he was determined to come up with a unique name.

He looked into Greek mythology and came across the name Icarius, a spartan king known for his speed.

Whether Icarius became fast because of his name or not doesn’t really matter. The fact is that he was fast and developed into one of the best defensive backs in the state during his time at Munford High School.


Lots of colleges noticed and Hodgin received scholarship offers from schools in Wisconsin, Virginia, Georgia and Michigan. Belhaven University, located in Jackson, Miss., stood about above them all and landed the prized recruit.

Hodgin made it official when he signed with Belhaven March 1 in the Munford cafeteria.

“When the coach came up here and recruited me he made me feel like I was wanted and I was their number one priority,” Hodgin said. “Plus, it’s close to home and my parents can come watch me play.”

The list of Hodgin’s high school football accomplishments is long. The 5-11, 180-pound safety was named all-state and region defensive player of the year the last two seasons and won countless other postseason honors.

“You name a team, he made it,” said Munford head coach Slade Calhoun.

His nine interceptions as a junior led the state and he picked off six more last season. He led Munford with 84 tackles last season and also averaged 16 yards per catch as a wideout with six touchdowns.

Calhoun said when Belhaven coaches came to visit Hodgin everybody was on the same page.

Munford senior Icarius Hodgin signed a football scholarship with Belhaven University on March 1. Also pictured are, from left, front, parents Candace and Jonathan Hodgin; back, MHS principal Dr. Courtney Fee, MHS coach Slade Calhoun and MHS assistant principal Darren Walker. Photo by Jennifer Tyler

“He’s a great middle of the field safety,” Calhoun said. “They had so much film on him dong what they wanted him to do it was a perfect fit. All the lingo they use is very similar to what we use.”

While Hodgin’s on-the-field accomplishments are very impressive, Calhoun said his character stands out just as much.

“He’s such a tremendous kid. If you talk to him for 10 minutes you’ll say, ‘Man, this kid is awesome’ … He never misses practice and his teachers and teammates love him. I’ve never heard him put down a teammate, nothing derogatory. He’s uplifting and the ultimate competitor. It doesn’t matter what you’re doing, he wants to win. He’s all out all the time. There’s no take it easy in his vocabulary.”

Jeff Ireland
Author: Jeff Ireland