The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Sports

December 26, 2013

Collier measures up for Vikings

DANVILLE — Chris Collier wishes he had a dollar for every time that he heard someone say that he is too small to play football.

The Danville High senior used those comments as his motivation and this past season, he did something for the Vikings that hasn’t happened in more than a decade.

Collier caught 51 passes this past season for 1,060 yards and 17 touchdowns. Additionally, he rushed for 206 yards, passed for 66 more, had 20 kickoff returns for 453 yards, two punt returns for 39 yards and two interception returns for 15 yards. That’s 1,839 all-purpose yards for the senior, and that wasn’t all he did. Collier also recorded 53 tackles from his defensive back position, four tackles for loss and 11 pass breakups.

Not too bad for a player, who is listed at just 5-feet, 7-inches, and a generous 165 pounds.

“I’ve heard that so many times,’’ said Collier about being too small. “I don’t feel like I’m too small on the football field. I feel like I’m a normal-sized kid on the field.

“There are advantages and disadvantages to being smaller, but as long as you are tough, you will be fine.’’

And Collier was more than fine this year. For his efforts this season, the Danville High senior is the 2013 Commercial-News Player of the Year.

“It was really outstanding season,’’ said senior teammate Trent Sherfield, who played quarterback and defensive back for the Vikings. “Any receiver that goes over 1,000 yards in a season — now that was outstanding.’’

But Collier wasn’t just a receiver for Danville High. He played six other positions this past season.

In the season opener against Bloomington, Collier played running back, receiver, corner back and he was the long snapper. As the season progressed, he made the switch to safety on defense and in Danville’s win over Decatur MacArthur (34-31), he had to come in at quarterback for an injured Sherfield, and he had nine punts this season for the Vikings.

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