By Miki Morris
Photos by Kurt Johnson
Editor’s Note – Corner Canyon High student journalist Miki Morris sat down with Charger lineman Keaton Bills late in the 2015 season. Here is the exchange, in Q&A format as part of our fall sports wrap-up content.
More than six-feet tall, known or recognized by nearly every single one of his peers, a great teammate and scouted by many colleges, Keaton Bills is one of the outstanding student athletes at Corner Canyon High.
The 6-foot-5, 250-pound senior just completed his final year of high school football and he will choose from among some elite college football programs. Listed as a three-star recruit by the services who track such things, Bills has offers from the state’s top programs as well as a number of out-of-state schools.
Bills is one of those people who disproves the football player stereotype that all football players are egotistical jocks who beat up the quiet, “weird” kids. He is genuinely kind to his peers, and jokes around to put a smile on someone’s face.
Sometimes when we think of the high school football player, we don’t really put a personality other than “football player” on them. However, I interviewed Keaton about football and who he is as a teenager, and I hope it shows you that he is a great person, not just a football star.
Miki Morris: How long have you played football?
Keaton Bills: “I started playing in seventh grade.”
Miki Morris: What position do you play?
Keaton Bills: “Defensive tackle and left tackle.”
Miki Morris: What’s your most memorable experience or game and why?
Keaton Bills: “Junior year, our game against Woods Cross. We were both undefeated and we were losing until the last two minutes, then we made an amazing comeback and won.”
Miki Morris: Do you plan on pursuing a future in football?
Miki Morris: How do you balance school, football and a social life?
Keaton Bills: “You just got to plan things out and think ahead.”
Miki Morris: What’s your favorite dessert?
Keaton Bills: “Vanilla ice cream with brownies.”
Miki Morris: What is a phrase you hope to be remembered by?
Keaton Bills: “Probably, ‘that guy was funny’.”
Miki Morris: What’s your greatest fear?
Keaton Bills: “Crickets. I used to have a lizard, and one day I came home from school and the crickets were all over my room–in my drawers and everything.”
Miki Morris: If you could have one superpower what would it be and why?
Keaton Bills: “Super strength, no doubt. I could do anything I want.”
Miki Morris: Have you ever contemplated quitting football?
Keaton Bills: “Yes, it’s crossed my mind once or twice. Just because I wanted to work and have a high school experience, and football consumes a ton of your time.”
Miki Morris: Have you ever been seriously injured while playing football?
Keaton Bills: “While playing offense I got caught between two people and I tore my labrum, but other than that I have not had any serious injuries.”
Miki Morris: Being a senior, what advice do you have for the younger players?
Keaton Bills: “Don’t take anything for granted, I know it’s so cliche but it goes by so fast. Live life as much as you can right now and enjoy your high school experience.”
Miki Morris: What’s your most memorable high school experience?
Keaton Bills: “A couple of my buddies and I went up to a cabin during the summer and it was the funnest thing.”
Miki Morris: What’s your favorite animal?
Keaton Bills: “Gorilla. They are super cute and they dominate the jungle. Plus it’s my spirit animal.”
Miki Morris: What do you hope to have accomplished in the next five years?
Keaton Bills: “I hope to have served an LDS mission, gone to college and started my degree.”
Keaton Bills does not want to be remembered as an amazing football player, he said specifically that he would like to be remembered simply as “that funny guy.” Although he is a spectacular player, he is a person just like you and me.