Vanessa Venjohn
ASU Student Journalist

Brigham Alexander is a multifaceted athlete at Benjamin Franklin

November 5, 2020 by Vanessa Venjohn, Arizona State University

Brigham Alexander #66 (Photo Courtesy: Stephanie Teuscher)

Vanessa Venjohn is an ASU Cronkite School of Journalism student assigned to cover Benjamin Franklin for

Towering at 6-feet-5 inches and 300 pounds, lineman Brigham Alexander stands out in the crowd. The Benjamin Franklin junior plays both offensive and defensive positions. While maintaining a 4.3 GPA, this multifaceted athlete is involved in other extracurricular activities beyond football, including soccer, wrestling and orchestra. He’ll also never refuse a plate of Mexican food.

Born in Indiana, Alexander moved to Arizona at a young age and was initially introduced to athletics through family. Tracy Alexander, 43, Alexander’s mother, was also a multi-sport athlete and encouraged all of her children to pursue athletics and the fine arts.

Tracy Alexander said she wanted all of her children to be “well-rounded individuals academically, musically, athletically and spiritually.” She said she “let them try everything to see what they liked and what they loved and where they really wanted to be.”

Alexander’s athletic career began at age 5 with soccer and continued into junior high. In his freshman year of high school, he found himself a spot on the varsity football team. Alexander was influenced by his grandfather, who played at Utah State and in the Canadian Football League before coaching on the college level.

Brigham Alexander with his grandfather. (Photo Courtesy: Tracy Alexander) 

Alexander said he preferred soccer “for a long time, but now [he] loves football more because there’s a bigger sense of brotherhood.” He also enjoys “the everyday grind” that connects him and his teammates.

After football season, Alexander switched to wrestling in the winter. He wrestled his freshman year and qualified for state as a sophomore.

Outside of athletics, Alexander is an exceptional student who takes three-advanced placement (AP) courses. He also has been involved in orchestra since fourth grade. He practices the cello, bass and is learning guitar.

Brigham Alexander with his academic award. (Photo Courtesy: Tracy Alexander) 

Alexander spends free time woodworking both as a hobby and as part-time for his mom’s carpentry business. His favorite project was constructing his own bed frame, which he still uses.

The extracurriculars keep Alexander extra busy, which challenges his work-ethic. He said his life “has been a grind,” and that he’s “been hard-working [his] entire life.”

“If anything is an obstacle, it is just another part of the job and I just do it,” Alexander said.

The biggest obstacle Alexander continues to overcome is his time-management skills.

“Especially during our 3A season where we went up to the championship game,” Alexander said. He struggled to balance homework, orchestra and football, which resulted in going to bed late each night. “But eventually, I was able to fix my time management skills,"

Alexander said: "I was able to work more efficiently, and I learned from my sisters about being faster at my work. I figured it out.”

A family picture of Brigham and his siblings. (Photo Courtesy: Tracy Alexander)

Another obstacle Alexander seeks to overcome involves his speed and agility. The “device drill” has been specifically helpful in improving his offensive drive.

“I’ve been using [device drill] to be able to change directions quicker and to be able to react faster to seeing the ball carrier and looking for the best way to tackle,” Alexander said.

Offensive coach Chad Jefferies said Alexander’s biggest strengths are his intelligence and work-ethic. Asked to describe Alexander in one word, Chad Jeffries chose “determined.”

“He leads by example; he does his best every play, every rep,” Chad Jeffries said. "He’s asking the coaches for advice all the time on how to be better.”

Brigham Alexander playing against Seton Catholic. (Photo Courtesy: Stephanie Teuscher) Benjamin Franklin head coach Dave Jefferies described Alexander’s biggest strengths as his own personal standards and accountability. Even when Alexander was in junior high, Dave Jefferies said the lineman was "always really good about working on his form and technique.”

Alexander’s inspiration stems from the hard-working players around him. "Everyone has these little things they do that really inspire me to change that about myself and be better in the way that they are,” he said.

This “big teddy-bear,” as Tracy Alexander described her son, has plans to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and attend one of his two dream schools, BYU or University of Utah, while studying construction management.