• 84°

Primetime 23: John Hilbert, Brookhaven High School

The goal for Brookhaven senior wide receiver John Hilbert this year is straightforward and simple.

“We want to win the state championship,” Hilbert said. “This is my last year and last ride, and that’s what we’re going for. We’re trying to stick together and teach the young guys.”

Hilbert was a force in the receiving department last season, totaling 525 yards on 31 catches and nine touchdowns. The Panthers have several returning players at the skill positions this season.

“I want to build off of last year’s season,” Hilbert said. “You want to get better and better every year that you play. I want to get better at my game and do even more this year.”

Senior quarterback Sevante Quinn returns for the Panthers to call the signals for the fourth consecutive season, and Hilbert said his experience will be a key factor for the Panthers this season.

“It’s good to have a guy at the quarterback position that’s been there for four years in Sevante,” Hilbert said. “We have great chemistry, and it’s like having a brother back there. You know what to expect with him, and we’ve played together for a while so we have strong chemistry.”

The program is under new leadership this season, as former head coach Tucker Peavey returned to Brookhaven after a stint at Southwest Community College.

Hilbert said the transition to the new coach has gone well, and that Peavey has taught him and the younger players a lot throughout the spring and into the summer.

“The transition has been great to coach Peavey,” Hilbert said. “Coach Clopton was a great coach, too. Coach Peavey is a great coach, too. I want to learn things from him. We’re going into the fall, and we just want to learn more and more so that we can get our game right.”

Brookhaven will be looking to defend their district title this season after going undefeated in district play last year and advancing to the second round of the playoffs.