Story and photo by Jesse Muñoz/COC Sports Information Director
College of the Canyons sophomore defensive end Noel Iwuchukwu has signed a National Letter of Intent with Arkansas State University and will continue his career as a member of the Red Wolves.
Arkansas State University is an NCAA Division I program located in Jonesboro, Arkansas. The Red Wolves compete in the Sun Belt Conference. In 2017, head coach Blake Anderson and the Red Wolves posted an overall record of 7-5. The team ended its season with a 35-30 loss to Middle Tennessee State in the Raycom Media Camellia Bowl played in Montgomery, AL.
A two-year player for COC head coach Ted Iacenda, Iwuchukwu was a Southern California Football Association (SCFA) National Division, Northern League First-Team honoree last season.
He finished the year with 42 total tackles, 2.5 sacks, 8.5 tackles for loss, one interception and a forced fumble to help lead a Cougar defense which allowed just 15.2 points per game over the final five contests.
"It's a really good feeling to be able to sign, it's a surreal feeling," Iwuchukwu said. "I appreciate Arkansas State for believing in me and believing in my talents.
"I'm excited to be a part of their program, part of their team and involved with the fan base and the community," added Iwuchukwu. "I'm ready for it all to be honest."
Lining up along side fellow COC all-conference defensive end Dorian Gerald and a talented rotation of freshman defensive lineman, the Cougars boasted one of the most fearsome defensive fronts in the state.
"With Dorian on the other side of me, me and him and our entire team camaraderie, we had a lot of fun out there," said Iwuchukwu. "(My teammates) are a big part of the reason I'm heading to Arkansas State."
Canyons recorded an overall record of 9-2 and 4-1 mark in conference play to trail Northern League champion Ventura College. The Cougars won seven of their final eight games, including a 28-16 victory over Mt. San Antonio College in the Western State Bowl.
Iwuchukwu was named the Western State Bowl defensive player of the game after posting six tackles and a key forced fumble.
"College of the Canyons means a lot to me," said Iwuchukwu. "Coach Iacenda and Coach (Dan) Corbet helped me to improve my talents and unlock my potential. They allowed me to surpass all the doubts that other people might have had about me."