Las Cruces, NM — New Mexico State head football coach Doug Martin announced Monday that former Aggie football player and NM State alum, Kerry Locklin, has been hired as the team’s defensive line coach.
“It was really important to bring a New Mexico State alum back to the program and hire somebody that wants to be here and has a lot of strong feelings about this university and the football program,” Martin said. “Coupled with Kerry’s experience at places like Fresno State will help us build this program in the right direction and it’s something we really look forward to.”
Locklin was a tight end at NM State for four years, where he was named an All-America honorable mention by both the Associated Press and the United Press International. He was also named a two-time All-Missouri Valley Conference selection and two-time academic all-conference honoree in his time with the Aggies.
“First I want to thank God for what I consider a true blessing to be able to come back to my alma mater and coach football,” Locklin said. “I have great memories from my playing days here at NM State. I thank Coach Martin for giving me an opportunity to fulfill a dream of mine. I feel in my heart that we have a great opportunity to do amazing things here in Las Cruces. New Mexico State has great facilities but it’s the people inside those facilities that make a great program and I feel that Coach Martin has assembled a good coaching staff that along with the right type of players can turn this program into a winner.”
The Locklin name has been on the Crimson & White sideline before, starting with Kerry’s father Billy Ray Locklin, who played for the Aggies from 1956-59, followed by Kerry’s older brother Ray in 1976-79. Kim Locklin, the youngest of the three brothers, played for NM State from 1981-84.
Most recently, Locklin was with the Sacramento Mountain Lions of the UFL (2012) and the San Jose SaberCats of the AFL (2012) as the defensive line coach. He also spent one season at Fresno City College in 2011 and with the Orlando Tuskers in 2010, also serving as the defensive line coach for both teams.
Locklin was with the N.Y. Jets in the National Football League for the majority of the 2009 season. The Jets ranked first in the NFL in points allowed per game at 14.7, and posted 32 sacks.
The New Mexico State alum began his coaching career at Western New Mexico University in 1988 as a running backs coach. He spent 1989 as a Graduate Assistant at the University of Utah. From 1990-93, Locklin was the running backs coach at Morehead State, where he worked under current Jets head coach, Rex Ryan. He then moved to the professional level with the Shreveport Pirates of the Canadian Football League, where he spent 1994 as an assistant head coach.
A native of Las Cruces, N.M., Locklin became the defensive line coach at Eastern Michigan in 1995, a post he held for five seasons for the Eagles. The next nine seasons (2000-08) of his career were spent with the Fresno State Bulldogs, where under his guidance 11 defensive lineman earned All-WAC honors and the Bulldogs appeared in eight bowl games. Two WAC Defensive Players of the Year thrived under Locklin during his tenure, in Garrett McIntyre and Alan Harper.
After his collegiate career, Locklin was drafted by the Los Angeles Rams in the sixth round of the 1982 NFL draft. He spent three seasons in the NFL, two with the Rams and one with the Denver Broncos. He concluded his professional career by playing two more years in the United States Football League with the Arizona Wranglers.
Locklin received his bachelor’s degree from NM State in physical education and social studies in 1982, then earned a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction in 1985. He is currently pursuing his doctorate degree in sports psychology from the University of Utah.
Locklin and his wife, Kelly, have one daughter, Tishelle, and sons Tymon and Torry.