Today’s Rising Senior spotlight is on Caden Hastings of Bell High School.
Hastings will play football and participate on the Bulldogs’ weightlifting team during his senior year. He has been a Gainesville Sun All-Area honorable mention in both sports.
This fall, he will play quarterback, running back and defensive back for the Bell football team. Last year as a junior, he had his career high passing game against Class 3A Interlachen. He threw for 141 yards and two touchdowns against the Rams. Hastings finished the season with 298 yards rushing for an average of 3.4 yards per carry with five touchdowns on the ground. On defense he recorded 34 tackles and had one interception.
His favorite quote is from his dad who said, “You get to choose to either be the hammer or the nail, be the hammer.”
Hastings is looking forward to being a senior leader this year. His goal is to perform to the best of his ability at his positions, be a great teammate, and make the playoffs.
A total of six starters return on offense for the Bell football team. Hastings is back under center for the Bulldogs after throwing for 366 yards and rushing for 298 yards. However, the Bulldogs must replace their top three running backs from last fall as Jonathon Neudert (831 yards), Branden Wallace (427), and Joey Pinna (403) were seniors. The trio combined for 1,661 yards and 15 touchdowns rushing.
On defense, a total of five starters return. Trent Steedley is back to anchor the line after leading the team with six sacks in 2019.
Bell, which finished 3-7 this past season, will once again be competing in Class 1A-Region 3. Six of the top nine teams in their region, which includes 3-time defending state champion Madison County, will make the postseason.
Bell is expected to play in the kickoff classic at St. Francis Catholic of Gainesville on August the 14th. The ‘Dogs will open up the regular season at home the following Friday against Franklin County.
If you or someone you know is a student-athlete, and rising senior, we want to hear from you. You can either send us an audio shout out which we will play on the radio, or send us your bio and I will voice it for you. For more information, please email mike@ThePrepZone.com.
Mike Ridaught is the founder and publisher of ThePrepZone.com, the foremost website for high school sports in northeast Florida.