“He’s Gonna Be a Tremendous Coach”: Ryan Day Shares Excitement About Carlos Locklyn Hire, Says He “Brings a Lot of Energy to the Table”

By Chase Brown on April 2, 2024 at 10:46 am
Carlos Locklyn
Ben Lonergan / The Register-Guard

Ryan Day made his first public comments about Ohio State’s newest coaching hire on Tuesday.

In an appearance on 97.1 The Fan’s “Morning Juice,” Day discussed his decision to hire Oregon’s Carlos Locklyn as the program’s next running backs coach. Day said he and offensive coordinator Chip Kelly identified 10 to 12 candidates for the role and interviewed seven of them. Ultimately, the Buckeyes’ top offensive minds landed on Locklyn.

“We wanted to find somebody who wanted to be at Ohio State at a high level. Carlos does that. He checks that box,” Day said. “He brings a lot of energy to the table.”

A former running back at Chattanooga, Locklyn has climbed the coaching ladder at an impressive pace. He began coaching in 2009 as a volunteer for high schools in Tennesee while he worked as a corrections and police officer. Locklyn later referred to himself as a “walk-on” coach during those years, and the name of his account on X still reflects that perspective.

“I love that about him,” Day said. “Like some of us in this profession, he came up not in a football family but grew up and kind of had to figure it out on their own. He’s one of those people. When you listen to how he came up in this thing, he’s very appreciative of all the opportunities he’s gotten. But he’s earned them all, and he deserved them all. He really earned and deserved this opportunity.”

Locklyn first became a college running backs coach at Western Kentucky in 2021. He previously spent three years at Memphis, progressing from weight room assistant in 2017 to offensive analyst in 2018 and director of high school relations in 2019. When Florida State hired Memphis head coach Mike Norvell as its program leader in 2020, Norvell brought Locklyn to Tallahassee, where he spent one year as a director of high school relations for the Seminoles.

“I think he’s gonna have a great impact on our team and a great impact on recruiting. I think he’s gonna be a tremendous coach.”– Ryan Day on Carlos Locklyn

At Oregon, Locklyn’s running back room was one of the best in America in 2022 and 2023. This past season, Bucky Irving ran for 1,180 yards and 11 touchdowns, and Jordan James ran for 759 yards and 11 scores. The Ducks ranked third in the FBS with 5.91 yards per carry.

With Locklyn’s track record, Day looks forward to watching him work with TreVeyon Henderson and Quinshon Judkins in Columbus. The duo is considered the best running back tandem in college football entering the 2024 season.

“I think he’s gonna have a great impact on our team and a great impact on recruiting,” Day said. “I think he’s gonna be a tremendous coach.”

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