Scarlet Sunrise: Buckeyes running backs share initial thoughts on Carlos Locklyn

IMG_7408by:Andy Backstrom04/07/24


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Buckeyes running backs share initial thoughts on Carlos Locklyn

Carlos Locklyn is the new Ohio State running backs coach. But he’s not new to all of the Ohio State running backs.

Both Quinshon Judkins and Dallan Hayden discussed their ties to the 46-year-old Locklyn, who led the Oregon backfield the last two seasons.

Before Locklyn coached at Oregon, he coached running backs at Western Kentucky. And before that, Locklyn held off-field roles at Florida State and Memphis.

At Florida State, Locklyn was the director of high school relations. He was part of a Seminoles staff that offered Judkins out of Pike Road high school, and Locklyn and Judkins connected over their Alabama roots.

“It’s been awesome to see him and continue that,” Judkins said this week of his prior relationship with Locklyn.

Hayden, on other hand, hails from Memphis and played his high school ball at Christian Brothers. Locklyn coached high school football in the Memphis area from 2009-16, and, in his playing days, starred at Chattanooga.

Hayden said he’s known Locklyn “for a minute” and had talked to him a few times well before Ohio State began a search for a new running backs coach following Tony Alford’s departure for Michigan.

“He’s a really good ball coach, a really good guy,” Hayden said.

Hayden, Judkins and the other Buckeyes running backs were involved in the hiring process, as head coach Ryan Day and the Ohio State staff identified 10-12 candidates and interviewed at least seven of them.

“Throughout that whole process, Coach Day kept us updated on what we were looking for, as far as the room, asking us what we were looking for and just telling us what he wanted for us in our room,” Judkins explained.

Hayden said he and his fellow tailbacks were notified of who was being brought in to interview, and they gave Day feedback on each of the candidates.

“As a whole, we felt like he would be the best guy,” Hayden said of Locklyn.

Wednesday marked Locklyn’s first Ohio State practice. While he’s just getting familiar with the Buckeyes’ offense, his teaching style is already showing, according to walk-on running back TC Caffey.

“In this practice alone, he just takes people aside and tells them exactly what they need to do, right then right there,” Caffey said.

“You can tell he’s a real straightforward guy, but he still loves his players and loves to be a coach.”

Locklyn, who worked in law enforcement before he pivoted to coaching full-time, is known for the edge he brings to the field. His first day in the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, though, he was surprisingly quiet, Judkins said. The Ole Miss transfer is expecting that to change soon.

“The energy is going to come soon,” Judkins said with a smile. “I’m excited.”

Do Buckeyes have any defensive transfer portal needs?

The spring transfer window opens on April 15.

Ohio State made a splash in the portal this winter, most notably reeling in former Alabama safety Caleb Downs. Will the Buckeyes make more additions to their already-elite defense this around?

Lettermen Row is breaking down, position by position, what Ohio State may need on that side of the ball when the portal reopens.

Check it out here.

In or Out? Predicting which wide receivers Ohio State land in 2025 cycle

Ohio State currently has the No. 1 recruiting class in the 2025 cycle, according to the On3 Industry Ranking. The Buckeyes already have three five-star prospects committed. None of those are wide receivers, however, four-star Wayne (N.J.) DePaul Catholic wide receiver De’Zie Jones has pledged.

Spearheaded by co-offensive coordinator and longtime receivers coach Brian Hartline, the Ohio State wideout pipeline is alive and well.

It’s expected to continue this year. Lettermen Row predicts which other wide receivers the Buckeyes will land this cycle.

Go here to find out.

Counting Down

Buckeyes vs. Akron: 146 days
Buckeyes vs. Michigan: 237 days

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