Former Mitchell coach accepts AD job

By Izzy Gould
Published November 12, 2006

LAND O'LAKES - Phil Bell should fit right in as Pasco County's new athletic director.

After accepting the job Friday afternoon, he took his two daughters to the one restaurant that seems to have its buffalo wings at every county sporting event - Beef O'Brady's.

Bell, 37, called this a "dream job" and said he eagerly accepted the post when it was offered over the phone by Pasco County superintendent Heather Fiorentino. A recommendation will be made to the School Board on Nov. 21, which should be nothing more than a formality.

"We felt like he had a pretty good plan and a vision for where he wanted to take the position and Pasco County athletics," assistant superintendent Jim Davis said.

Bell, an assistant principal at Hudson and former baseball coach at Mitchell, replaces Kit Broadbelt who retired in July after 10 years in that role.

However, Bell becomes the county's first full-time athletic director after the school board unanimously agreed to redefine the position in August.

Bell will be responsible for enforcing the Florida High School Athletic Association guidelines, as well as new athletic director duties that include overseeing the county's athletic facilities.

The other finalists were Brian Colding, Jack Homko and Brad Sterling.

"Athletics have been very important in my life, and they are important to a lot of kids," Bell said. "Having an opportunity to help shape athletics in this county is something I think I could be good at and something I envisioned myself doing.

"It's a career goal, and it's here."