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2019 Top 50 Football Returner Rankings: No. 5, Bladen Stankey

The No. 5 player in the Top 50 Returner Rankings is an athletic freak.

Shasta junior Bladen Stankey has the ability to dominate on both sides of the ball at guard and defensive end. (Photo by Tony Hord / Shasta County Sports)

5. Bladen Stankey (6-3, 220), G/DE, Shasta, Jr.

The scary thing about Shasta lineman Bladen Stankey isn’t that he’s a freak athletically, capable of dominating on both the offense and defensive side of the ball.

It’s that he’s only a junior and the ceiling for the one called ‘Lil Stank (there’s a Big Stank, older brother Kane on varsity and Baby Stank, little brother on the freshman team) is through the roof.

“He could start both ways and has the stamina to not have to take plays off,” Shasta coach JC Hunsaker said. 

And while the Wolves hope to limit their two-way players, make no mistake that Stankey will have an impact on both sides — at times — on Friday nights.

Last season, he notched 23 tackles, including two for a loss, at the defensive end spot, while leading the way at guard on offense.

The combination Stankey and No. 14 returner Logan Thibodeau as pulling guards could give defensive coordinators fits and linebackers nightmare as the Wolves run their sweeps.

“He’s blessed athletically,” Hunsaker said.

A first-team preseason All-Northern Section Cal-Hi Sports pick, Stankey can chase down running backs and quarterbacks among the best of them in the North State and could be drawing attention of college scouts after a junior season filled with high expectations.

Top 50 Returning Rankings

Aug. 9: Nos. 41-50
Aug. 10: Nos. 36-40
Aug. 11: Nos. 31-35
Aug. 12: Nos. 26-30
Aug. 13: Nos. 21-25
Aug. 14: Nos. 16-20
Aug. 15: Nos. 11-15
Aug. 16: Nos. 8-10
Aug. 17: No. 7, Chris Ostergren
Aug. 18: No. 6, Timothy Westlund
Aug. 19: No. 5, Bladen Stankey
Aug. 20: No. 4, Isaiah Pena
Aug. 21: No. 3, Brandon Merryman
Aug. 22: No. 2, James Weaver
Aug. 23: No. 1, Cade Lambert

Aaron Williams has been involved in the North State sports scene for nearly two decades. He spent eight years as the Sports Editor for the local newspaper and another four more as the voice of high school football on the radio. Williams has coached various sports at the high school level over the past decade, most recently at Shasta High, and is also the public address announcer for the Shasta College football and basketball teams.


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