Teen who died in weekend crash identified as basketball star

April 1, 2013
Derrick Duff

Derrick Duff

A Bakersfield teen who died Saturday morning after a crash on Highway 101 just north of State Route 166 ejected him from a jeep was a high school basketball star. [Californian]

Highland High School senior Derrick Duff, 18, was the leading scorer and most valuable player on his school’s basketball team.

Duff’s basketball coach Jeff Waldrip described him as “a great player” and “a great person overall.”

“He was the best athlete I had. He was a leader,” Waldrip said.

Duff grew up in Chicago, but moved with his family to Texas and then to Bakersfield last year. He had yet to decide where he wanted to play college basketball.

The crash that killed Duff occurred around 2:20 a.m. Saturday morning when the driver of the jeep veered into the center guardrail on Southbound Highway 101. Duff was not wearing a seatbelt at the time. The California Highway Patrol determined that drugs and alcohol did not factor into the crash.


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God Bless this young man and his family. Glad he wasn’t drunk or on drugs. Please everyone put your seatbelt on! If not for you then for your families at home.

Blessings, may he rest in peace.

It kills me to see people killed from lack of wearing seatbelts. Some of these types of deaths may not happen if used.