Well, there’s apparently another “candidate” on the WVU coaching horizon: Mike Locksley. If you haven’t heard that name, don’t fret. Before this week, neither had I — neither had most anyone else. Of course, when you have your name show up on a message board 4 million times in 2 days, people start to know who you are.
If you still don’t know, Mike Locksley is the offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach at the University of Illinois. Locksley started his major coaching career at Maryland in 1997, first serving only as the running backs coach and then assuming the title of recruiting coordinator in 1998. He joined the staff of Ron Zook at Florida in 2003 in the same capacity. When Zook was fired in 2004, Locksley followed Zook to Illinois, being promoted to offensive coordinator.
Locksley is generally regarded to be one of the finest recruiters in the country. He has been rated in the top 25 of recruiters by both Sports Illustrated and Rivals. Zook has been known as a great recruiter at both Florida and Illinois, which is also a testament to Locksley’s skills.
It’s certainly an impressive enough resume. He deserves an interview, especially since Illinois also runs the spread offense. Unfortunately for Mr. Locksley, I am not sure how serious a candidate he really is. WVU seems commited to bringing in a coach with West Virginia ties. While that’s a good plan in theory, we saw just how well the end result was with Rich Rodriguez. That is why the word candidate is listed in quotations above.
It will be interesting to see, in the coming days, if WVU returns the interest in Locksley. If they do, it will be a positive step in this coaching search. At least the people in charge are finally showing some creativity.