116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
Derrick Willies is going long this season. A lot.
Willies' Trinity Valley Community College football team in Athens, Texas, has already played five of its nine scheduled games. The Cardinals are 3-2, with help from the former Iowa wide receiver.
Willies has 23 receptions for 599 yards and six touchdowns, and he has one carry, an 8-yard touchdown run. In TVCC's 61-32 win over Kilgore College last Saturday, he had just three catches. But they were for 54, 56 and 63 yards, and two were for touchdowns.
Whether there is any defense in Texas juco football may be debatable. Trinity Valley opened with two losses, 66-56 to Nassau Community College and 71-64 to Tyler Junior College.
The Cardinals rebounded with a 72-50 win over Navarro College, then beat Cisco College 58-40 before its victory over Kilgore.
Trinity Valley is averaging 456.4 passing yards and 698.2 total yards per game while allowing 535.4 total yards per outing.
Willies, a sophomore, is committed to join Texas Tech's program next season. He transferred to Trinity Valley after leaving Iowa's program last October.
He had a ballyhooed spring game with the Hawkeyes in 2014, and the outside world thought he would add something important to Iowa's offense. But he caught just four passes for 71 yards in his 5-game Hawkeye career, one for a 12-yard touchdown in a comeback win over Ball State. Then he quit the team.
He said he was interested in returning to the program, but the feeling didn't appear to be mutual. So off he went.
Texas Tech is second in FBS in passing yards per game this season, with 399.0.