Mike Locksley enters his third season as the head coach at New Mexico. Locksley was named New Mexico's 29th head football coach on Dec. 9, 2008.
Locksley, who turned 41 on Christmas Day, is a 19-year veteran of collegiate coaching. He came to the Land of Enchantment after four seasons (2005-08) as the offensive coordinator at the University of Illinois, serving as the quarterbacks coach the final three seasons.
In two seasons as the head coach at New Mexico, Locksley has posted a 2-22 record. Inheriting a program serving three year's NCAA probation with scholarship reductions, Locksley has guided UNM through a difficult time. The Lobos have won just one game each of his first two seasons but Locksley continues to build the program the right way. He remains focused on turning the program around and doing it by building a foundation with young, talented student-athletes.
Locksley earned his first head coaching victory on Nov. 21, 2009, a 29-27 decision over Colorado State on Senior Day. During his first year at UNM, Locksley installed the spread offense and set the foundation for his style of play. The Lobos went 1-11 overall and 1-7 during Mountain West Conference play. UNM had two All-Americans in sophomore LB Carmen Messina, who led the nation in tackles with 162, and freshman TE Lucas Reed. Four Lobos were named All-MWC in 2009.
Locksley continued to impress the college football community with his recruiting prowess, when he signed one of the best classes ever at New Mexico in February of 2010.
Operating with one of the nation's youngest teams in 2010, the Lobos again finished 1-11 and 1-7 in the MWC. Massive injuries affected a program already short on depth, primarily at quarterback where UNM used four different starters, including two true freshmen. Messina, who led the league in tackles again, and Reed, earned all-conference recognition.
"Locks," as he is commonly addressed, also spent two seasons (2003-04) at the University of Florida as the running backs coach and recruiting coordinator under current Illinois head coach Ron Zook, and six seasons (1997-2002) in the same role at the University of Maryland for head coaches Ron Vanderlinden and Ralph Friedgen.
Throughout his career, Locksley has been recognized as one of the top recruiters in the country. He was listed among the top-20 recruiters in the nation by Sports Illustrated and was named a top-25 recruiter by Rivals.com while at Illinois. In 2003, he helped Florida assemble the seventh-best recruiting class in the country according to Rivals.
Locksley turned Illinois into one of the nation's top offenses as the Illini led the Big Ten in rushing in 2006 (188.8 ypg) and 2007 (256.7 ypg), and in passing (269.3 ypg) in 2008.
Illinois ranked second in the Big Ten and 19th nationally in total offense in 2008, averaging 439.4 yards. It topped 5,000 yards of total offense for the second straight season in 2008 - a feat that hasn't been achieved at New Mexico since 2003 and just twice since 1986.
Four members of the 2008 Illinois offense earned postseason honors. Sophomore receiver Arrelious Benn was named first-team All-Big Ten after leading the conference in receiving yards (1,055). Quarterback Juice Williams and offensive linemen Xavier Fulton and Ryan McDonald earned second-team honors.
Williams, under direct guidance from Locksley, became one of the school's most productive quarterbacks. In three years under Locksley, Williams passed for more than 6,000 yards and rushed for more than 2,000. He set school records for rushing yards by a quarterback and single-season total offense.
Williams led the Big Ten in passing (3,173 yards) and total offense (3,892 yards) in 2008 and was third in passing efficiency (136.15 rating). The 2007 Illinois offense became the third in school history to surpass the 5,000-yard mark and first to top 3,000 yards rushing. Led by Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year Rashard Mendenhall, the Illini led the Big Ten in rushing for the second straight year and finished fifth nationally at 256.7 yards a game.
Mendenhall, who averaged 129 rushing yards, was a first-round draft pick of the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2008. Williams showed incredible improvement, becoming the first Illini QB to rush for more than 1,000 yards in a career and improving his completion percentage by 17.4 percent from his sophomore season.
Illinois played Southern California in the 2008 Rose Bowl and finished the season ranked 18th in the nation in the the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' poll and 20th by the Associated Press following a 9-4 season.
Locksley was a big force behind the Illini's recruiting efforts,. He was named the No. 5 recruiter in the Big Ten and ranked among the top-20 in the nation by Sports Illustrated. In 2005, Rivals.com named him a top-25 recruiter.
In 2006, Locksley led an Illinois offense that paced the Big Ten and ranked 10th in the nation in rushing, averaging 188.8 yards. He tutored versatile running back Pierre Thomas, a two-time honorable mention All-Big Ten pick, who wrapped up his career as the No. 6 all-time rusher at Illinois and was the New Orleans Saints' leading ball carrier in 2008.
Prior to his arrival at Illinois, Locksley worked two seasons for Zook at Florida, serving as running backs coach and recruiting coordinator.
In 2004, UF running back Ciatrick Fason led the SEC and ranked 19th in the NCAA in rushing at 105.6 yards a game, earning second-team All-SEC honors.
The Florida offense finished first in the SEC in passing offense (271 yards a game) and total offense (426.9 yards a game) and was second in scoring offense (31.8 points a game). Quarterback Chris Leak led the conference in total offense at 273 yards a game.
In 2003, three Gator rushers logged more than 500 yards and each averaged at least 5.5 yards per carry.
Locksley worked as the Maryland running backs coach for six seasons, plus five years as recruiting coordinator.
Three different running backs - Chris Downs, Bruce Perry and Lamont Jordan - rushed for more than 1,000 yards and were named first-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference.
In 1999, Jordan spearheaded a Terps' rushing attack that led the ACC (234.1 yards a game) and ranked 12th in the nation. Jordan was the ACC's runner-up for 1997 Rookie of the Year and finished as a Doak Walker semifinalist. Jordan was selected in the second round of the 2001 NFL Draft and totaled more than 3,700 yards for four teams in a nine-year professional career.
Perry was the 2001 ACC Offensive Player of the Year, a first for a Terp running back, and the first sophomore to win the award. Both Perry and Jordan earned All-America honors under Locksley's watch.
Locksley began his coaching career on the defensive side of the ball with stops at his alma mater, Towson University, as the defensive backs coach (1992), at the U.S. Navy Prep School (1993-94), at University of the Pacific (1995) and at Army (1996).
A three-year starter at Towson, Locksley played safety and was named the team's defensive Most Valuable Player in 1991 as a senior. He finished his career ranked 19th on the school's all-time tackles list.
Locksley graduated from Towson in 1992 with a bachelor's degree in business administration and marketing.
Locksley and his wife, Kia, have four children; three sons, Mike, Jr., Meiko and Kai, and a daughter, Kori.