Super 16: Bartow Linebacker Is Determined to Succeed
Sun. August 19, 2012 at 2:04 a.m. | By Polk Preps Staff
Bartow's Freddie Stevenson will be going to Florida State after his senior season with the Yellow Jackets. (Photo by MICHAEL WILSON | THE LEDGER )
By HASANI HARPER | LEDGER CORRESPONDENT
BARTOW | Never get outworked. Never say you can't do something.
That's Bartow linebacker Freddie Stevenson's motivation in the weight room and on the football field.
"During the season, whenever I'm on the field I have to be the one to make all the tackles," Stevenson said. "In the offseason, when I'm in the weight room, I give it my all and try to make sure no one goes harder than me."
That straightforward, businesslike mentality has helped the senior become one of the most sought-after recruits in the county this year.
Stevenson, a 6-foot-1, 230-pound inside linebacker who is one of the 2012 PolkPreps.com Super 16 selections, has received more than 20 Division I offers from programs including Kentucky, Minnesota, Ole Miss, Purdue, Texas A&M, Central Florida and Florida State.
In July, he committed to Florida State.
Bartow coach Brett Biggs knew he had a special player when he first took the head-coaching job at Bartow in 2010.
"He is an extremely smart and physical guy," Biggs said. "His movement and speed on the field and his feel for the game was second-to-none. I could tell he would be a big-time player."
Stevenson's leadership is a huge asset to the defense according to Biggs and it was evident in the spring game against Hardee that it was missing.
"He is that critical peace that you need to have a complete defensive package," Biggs said. "His absence in the spring game was a given because of the injury. It hurt us a bit because he is one of the better players on the field at any given time."
Stevenson suffered a broken fibula in November in a game against Winter Haven. But he's close to 95 percent healed and looking forward to the upcoming season.
"The biggest thing for me is to come back as healthy as I can from this injury to help the team on offense and defense," Stevenson said. "I want to help us earn a district and state title."