As a sophomore, Craig Bills was the only underclassmen to be named as a First-Team All-State selection. Bills followed up his sophomore year with another smash-mouth and dominating defensive performance that led to another First-Team All-State selection. Now in the offseason, Bills has turned his athleticism towards a sport that requires a little less contact.
“I’ve just been running track and lifting with the football team,” said Bills. “My 4x100 team made state, so we’re going to run for the state championship on Friday. In the 100 I run an 11.3.”
Although he plays a key role on his track team, Bills hasn’t completely put football on a dusty shelf. When he has time, he heads out onto the football field to keep the rust from collecting.
“I’ve also been doing some spring drill stuff like running routes with receivers,” Bills said. “Mostly stuff like that and lifting. We have a new lifting program that we’ve been doing and that’s been going good.”
Bills has been working to increase his strength during the offseason in preparation for his final year as a Timpview High School Thunderbird.
“Right now my bench is 275,” Bills said. “My squat is around 315, but I haven’t maxed out on my squat, so I don’t really know. My clean is 255 though.”
With so many college recruiters from various universities all around the country stopping by Timpview High School to get a feel on the recruiting scenario, Bills has learned that many have shown great interest in his services.
“There have been a lot of teams that have asked for my film,” said Bills. “Coach Wong just tells them that I’m 100 percent committed to BYU, and that’s the truth because I am 100 percent committed to BYU.”
Many of his current Timpview teammates have committed to Coach Mendenhall and his staff, and Bills is happy that yet another teammate - Tui Crichton - has chosen to become a part of the Cougar program.
“It’s really exciting,” said Bills. “When Tui told me that he had committed to BYU, I was like, ‘Yes, it’s about time.’ It’s just exciting to know that he’s going to be there with me and [we’ll] work together. We talk about playing at BYU.”
Another fellow teammate that will join Bills at a later time is defensive end Bronson Kaufusi. KJZZ sports commentator Alema Harrington labeled Kaufusi as the best defensive end in the state of Utah as a sophomore.
“It’s going to be fun playing with him too,” said Bills. “Having this big 6’6” defensive end over there is great. When I get home from my mission it’s going to be great playing with him as well as the other guy on my [Timpview High School] team.”
BYU is ranked highly in the various football polls, with some sports experts expecting BYU to bust the BCS. Bills also expects the Cougars to have a good year, both offensively and defensively.
“I think we’re going to be really good,” Bills said with a smile. “The offense is going to dominate with Max Hall coming back, as well as the other players we have coming back. I think they’re going to tear it up in the Mountain West Conference and put up some big numbers. I expect them to tear it up this year no matter who we play.
“On the defensive side of the ball, we have some young guys, but we have a lot of athleticism, so I’m not really worried. I think we’ll do good on both sides of the ball.”