Hawkeyes’ top receiver in court on drug charges

Iowa wide receiver Derrell Johnson-Koulianos celebrates with fans in this Oct. 30, 2010, file photo, after a game against Michigan State in Iowa City, Iowa.

Iowa wide receiver Derrell Johnson-Koulianos celebrates with fans in this Oct. 30, 2010, file photo, after a game against Michigan State in Iowa City, Iowa. Photo by The Associated Press.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Standout Iowa receiver Derrell Johnson-Koulianos managed to flash a smile during his initial court appearance Wednesday on drug charges that have shocked Hawkeye fans and left his future in doubt.

Johnson-Koulianos, Iowa’s all-time leading receiver and a fan favorite nicknamed “DJK,” is accused of keeping a drug house at his home in a quiet neighborhood several blocks from campus. He’s also charged with possession of cocaine and marijuana, and police said he tested positive for both.

Decked out in big glasses and sports jacket over a turtleneck, Johnson-Koulianos smiled for photographers as he entered the Johnson County courtroom. He stood with his hands behind his back as Judge Stephen Gerard read the seven charges against him and the potential jail time — up 7 1/2 years — and fines he faces. He waived his right to a preliminary hearing and an arraignment date was not immediately scheduled.

He walked out of the courthouse without commenting and left in a car driven by defense attorney John Beasley, who also declined comment.

The 23-year-old receiver and his roommate, 21-year-old Brady Cooper Johnson, were charged Tuesday after police officers raided their Iowa City home. Johnson-Koulianos was released after posting $8,000 bond. Johnson made his initial appearance by video from the jail, where he was later released on $14,500 bond.

Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz suspended Johnson-Koulianos from team activities after learning of the arrest, which came as Iowa begins to prepare to play Missouri in the Insight Bowl on Dec. 28.

Johnson-Koulianos, a senior from Campbell, Ohio, received first-team all-Big Ten honors from the conference’s coaches last month. He finished the regular season with 46 receptions for 745 yards and 10 touchdowns, becoming Iowa’s career leader in receptions and receiving yards in the process. He was the first player ever to lead the Hawkeyes in receiving his first three seasons.

Police say they found marijuana, more than $3,000 in cash, a digital scale and other items used to sell drugs throughout the residence. The player’s roommate, Johnson, was charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and several other charges. A complaint alleges Johnson was “selling large amounts of marijuana.”

The complaint against Johnson-Koulianos does not accuse him of dealing drugs. Instead, it says officers located cocaine residue, “small quantities of marijuana” in his bedroom, and a variety of legal painkillers and other pills for which he did not have prescriptions.

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