PLANO, TX –  offensive lineman Caden Kitler has never traveled to the state of Florida. That’s about to change soon this summer.

The three-star prospect from Texas announced his plans Friday to take an official visit to UCF the weekend of June 18 through the 20th. Kitler shared that he’s excited to see an old friend of his, UCF offensive line coach Herb Hand.

“Coach Hand was one of the first coaches who started recruiting me when I was a sophomore so I’ve been looking forward to seeing him in person again,” Kitler told Knights247. “I’ve never been to Florida so I’m super excited to visit and hopefully ‘live where people vacation.'”

Kitler says he and Coach Hand, who previously coached at the University of Texas for three years, have a “great” relationship. The two-sport athlete who competes as a thrower in track and field mentioned his father as well when talking about Coach Hand.

“He’s one of my favorite coaches to talk to,” Kitler said about Coach Hand. “He sends me inspirational quotes every other day which help kickstart the day. We talk about how I’m doing in track, campus life at UCF, and how he and his players are doing. Sometimes we talk about cooking because he loves to cook and my dad is a chef so they have a little connection too.”


On the football field this past season, Kitler earned an Honorable Mention by the All-State Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools (TAPPS) for his performance at offensive line, his school announced. In 2019, Kitler earned a spot on the TAPPS Division 1 District 2 First-Team Offense as a sophomore by the Dallas Morning News.

During his freshman season in track and field in 2019, Kitler reached state finals in the shot put competition in the TAPPS Class 6A. In 2020, Kitler set a school record in the discus with a throw of 167-10, which ranked  No. 1 in the Dallas area and 15th-best in the nation entering this spring season, according to the Dallas Morning News.

This year, Kitler continues to do well in track and field. On Thursday, Kitler qualified for Regionals in both throwing events, notching a 118-02 in the discus and a 49-02.75 in the shot put, according to his school.

The 6-foot-3 295-pound offensive line prospect has had obvious success in both football and track and field, which has attracted college programs from across the country. Kitler has scholarship offers from 26 schools including UCF, which offered in early March, Memphis, Houston, and Navy among others.

In addition to visiting UCF, Kitler says he has an official visit scheduled with Memphis in the first week of June and is still scheduling other official visits. As for unofficial visits, Kitler says he plans touring in-state UTSA and traveling to Kansas State as well.

So what stands out to Kitler the most about UCF? The new coaching staff and head coach Gus Malzahn, of course.

“Coach Malzahn has put together a great staff and I’m super excited to get to know everyone better,” Kitler said. “I’m confident that I would play for a team that would develop me into the player I want to become. The success in recent years also stands out a lot too.”