The Brookhaven Bearcats scored some points without taking the field.

The Brookhaven Bearcats scored some points without taking the field.

Members of the Brookhaven High School football team and cheerleading squad gave away back-to-school supplies during a special event on Saturday, Aug. 22.

Hundreds of youngsters from kindergarten through eighth grade, many of whom might have started classes this week without the notebooks and other materials they need, turned out at the Karl Road school for the event, according to Tonya Robinson.

She's president of the Brookhaven Touchdown Club, which was founded last year by Carla Griggs.

Normally, the function of such an organization is to raise funds for the players, but Robinson said she and Griggs did some brainstorming and came up with the idea of the school supplies giveaway. Their goal was to "give something positive back to Brookhaven, positive back to city schools, period."

Robinson said she and Griggs dubbed the effort "Athletes Preparing for Academic Excellence."

The two football moms were hoping 300 students would show up, but Robinson believes even more than that turned out.

"It turned out huge," Robinson said. "We were really shocked. People really started lining up, a lot of people."

Prior to handing out the supplies, Robinson said, the football players, many of whom are 3.0 or better students, took time to encourage the children to stay in school.

Most of those receiving supplies were from the Northland community, according to Robinson, but she said that some made the trip from south Columbus.

It's a sign of how needed such a giveaway was, she said.

"In these times, with the economy, it's getting hard out there," Robinson said. "The kids really put their heart into it. Our football players and cheerleaders were really excited."