First, Jerrod Heard, and now Kai Locksley. Everybody wants — or is being forced — to play receiver at Texas.
Locksley is now listed as a receiver on the official Texas roster. Various Internet sites have hinted that Locksley, the fourth-string quarterback, was working out at receiver in recent days. But Texas coach Charlie Strong had not said anything official.
Strong has said numerous times that he wants three quarterbacks. Then, Heard moved to receiver earlier in training camp while Tyrone Swoopes and Shane Buechele battled for the starting job. Heard started 10 games last season and broke the school’s single-game total yardage record with 527 yards against California.
Possibly knowing that he wasn’t going to play quarterback this season, Heard said he went to Strong and asked to change positions. The coach quickly agreed. Heard is now likely to see extensive time in the slot.
Locksley got virtually no practice repetitions in the two practices open to reporters in early August. There was nothing to indicate his place on the quarterback depth chart changed as the month wore on.
The 6-foot-4 redshirt freshman threw for 915 yards and five touchdowns as a senior at Gilman School in 2014.
It’s possible Locksley wouldn’t even be at Texas if Zach Gentry kept his commitment to UT during the 2015 recruiting cycle. Gentry, a 6-foot-7 standout from New Mexico, backed out of his UT pledge after new Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh made a hard charge to land Gentry after being hired.
Gentry went to Michigan. And Harbaugh quickly moved him to tight end.
Faced with the prospect of signing no quarterbacks, the Texas coaches put all their chips on Locksley, whose father was the offensive coordinator at Maryland at the time. Strong and offensive coaches Shawn Watson and Joe Wickline flew to Baltimore to make a no-holds-barred recruiting pitch and convinced Locksley to flip to UT from Florida State.
“We were going to see him whether he said yes or no,” Strong said on signing day in 2015.
Locksley redshirted last season but didn’t get to show what he could do in the new offense during the spring game. Rain forced the cancellation of the second half, and Locksley wasn’t too happy about it.
“Honesty is a lost cause now a days.., ” Locksley tweeted afterward. “Could’ve told my mother to save her money on the plane ticket.”
Contact Brian Davis at 512-445-3957. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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