Over the years, we’ve done different countdowns to kickoff (or tipoff). This year, we’re putting a twist on the classic “Best Auburn Player to Ever Wear Each Number” list. Football is all about lighting up the scoreboard in 2021, so let’s take a walk down memory lane and review the last time a player in each uniform number put up points.
#33 — Will Hastings, WR/K
Game — Auburn vs. Tulane, September 7, 2019
Thank goodness this game was the first AUfficial white-out, because my word it was hot and humid. Auburn’s offense had a little trouble getting into gear against a pretty tough-for-a-G5 Tulane defense. A big 3rd and 2 conversion on a delay screen to Boobee Whitlow got Auburn in scoring range, and Will Hastings did the rest.
This one is a perfect call, it just needed proper execution. It’s good ole Four Verts. Hastings works himself into the MASSIVE hole in the middle of the what appears to be a “Cover 6” style zone (the top half looks like Cover-4, the bottom half is Cover-2, and the boundary DB is caught in no-man’s land between Seth Williams and Hastings), and Bo delivers a good enough ball to let him haul it into the end zone.
Hastings’s story is a fascinating one. He walked-on as a kicker, but he never actually attempted a kick in a game. After a year on the scout team, he worked his way into the WR rotation in 2016. A year later he managed 20 catches for 525 yards and 4 touchdowns, but a knee injury would rob us of his 2018 season (and rob Jarrett Stidham of one of his favorite targets). Sadly he wasn’t quite the same in 2019, this was his only touchdown of the season, but Hastings remained a fan-favorite nonetheless.
As of right now, #33 belongs to redshirt freshman/JUCO transfer linebacker Joko Willis, so there’s a decent chance Hastings holds on to this one for a while.