Q&A with promising GSU freshman Joe Lockley

During a pass-blocking drill in a recent practice, Joe Lockley slammed into his blocker and pushed him backward like he was wearing roller-skates. They lined up again, and Lockley pushed his guy backward, turned him sideways and moved him a few more yards.

Watching nearby, Bill Curry turned on the bullhorn and reminded Lockley the goal was to get to the quarterback, not win the wrestling match.

Lockley, a true freshman from Portal, has proven to be a a block of granite on the defensive line and could see playing time this season in coordinator Anthony Midget’s 4-2-5 scheme. Because Lockley is so strong and plays with good leverage, he is hard to move inside, which could help a running defense that allowed an average of 180.5 yards per game last season.

Lockley, who weighs 290 pounds, suffered a slight injury to his shoulder, but has returned to play in most of the drills.

Q: How’s your shoulder?

A: It’s getting better day by day. We’ve got an excellent training staff. They are working with me very day. I’m coming in for treatment and taking little strides day by day. I’m coming back to full potential. They added something new I can do.

Q: Should Georgia State fans be happy or scared that you are already the strongest guy on the team?

A: [Laughs] I would say neither nor. It’s just the work we put in this summer. My numbers in the weight room don’t really reflect me as a person. It’s just the work we put in the weight room. I just happen to be at this level at this point starting off my career. There’s a lot of strong guys on the team. But to play football you can’t just be physically strong, you’ve got to be mentally strong also. That’s something I’ve got to build on.

Q: Where does the strength come from? Have you always been a weightlifter or are you just naturally strong?

A: Kind of both. I had an excellent weightlifting coach in high school. Whenever Georgia State sent me their workout, I jumped on it and didn’t turn my back on it and kept going. When I got here, Georgia State has an excellent weightlifting coach in coach Pollard. He took me under his wing and helped me get where I am.

Q: Were your dad or uncles or anybody like that strong? Did you lift with them?

A: No, it was always on me.

Q: Any summer jobs?

A: No. The only thing I did was summer football.

Q: Give folks your numbers. How much are you lifting?

A: My bench press is 455, I squat 600 and my hang-clean is 275.

Q: The coaches say you are more than a weightlifter, you can play football. You stay low, you have good leverage. Did you develop the fundamentals in high school, or are you just naturally low?

A: I’m not the tallest defensive lineman. I’m not 6-3 or 6-4, I’m 6-1 and I use whatever I can to my advantage to beat my opponent by staying low and getting off the ball.

Q: What about off the field, what do you like to do?

A: I like to get some rest time, get some me time. I spend a lot of time with my brothers on the defensive line. We call ourselves the “Dog Pound.” Dogs travel in packs and we travel in packs. We’re always hanging out with each other, playing video games or going out to eat or going to the mall.

Q: What in the world is there to do in Portal?

A: Well, there’s not much to do in Portal. You can go to Statesboro and go to the mall, or go to Savannah. There’s a lot of surrounding areas that you can go and find something productive to do.

Q: Anything that Portal is famous for?

A: Not really. It’s just a small town.

34 comments Add your comment

ajg-marietta

August 21st, 2012
7:08 am

Great stuff, Doug. I am really looking forward to seeing what a disruptive force this D-Line can be.

RidgeRunner

August 21st, 2012
7:36 am

Out of GS’s back yard. Another great interview.

GStateBen

August 21st, 2012
7:46 am

Lockley is as well spoken as he is a football player. Awesome stuff. Thanks Doug!

The Freshman on this roster will be the foundation.

Panama

August 21st, 2012
8:11 am

Loving this kid.

Eagle here

August 21st, 2012
8:26 am

Can you beat Southern Eagle?

GSUAlumBaseball81

August 21st, 2012
8:58 am

Very Impressive! Joe, you’re the man and I look forward to watching you dominate on the D-Line. Dog Pound, I LOVE IT! I believe the CAA/VAA is in for a surprise in 2012. Thanks, Doug for the continued excellent coverage! You the man too! GO PANTHERS!!!

Panama

August 21st, 2012
8:59 am

@ Eagle Here

Is that a type of Bourbon?

Panama

August 21st, 2012
9:00 am

#STATEofSHOCK

Red Panther

August 21st, 2012
9:07 am

Love this freshman class; it will be fun seeing where they will eventually lead this team. Go Panthers!

GSU_MEX_ALUM

August 21st, 2012
9:16 am

Looking forward to watching you play Lockley!

GSU_MEX_ALUM

August 21st, 2012
9:17 am

Pack the dome!

08/30/2012

Jee S. You

August 21st, 2012
9:23 am

You know Portal is really bad off if a trip to Statesboro is exciting. Nice to see his attitude, sounds like he will be a great Panther!

A person SMART enough to know.....

August 21st, 2012
9:53 am

Post #13 hold me back Football season is really rolling at GaState.

Bleed Blue

August 21st, 2012
10:21 am

Great write up. I wonder is he FCS strong or FBS strong.

Panther

August 21st, 2012
10:47 am

Lol. For fun they go to the mall in Statesboro. WHAT A PLACE

Techie

August 21st, 2012
12:28 pm

We might win four games this year. I might have to become a Panther fan here real soon.

A person SMART enough to know.....

August 21st, 2012
12:33 pm

On a real note how are you GaState fans feeling about joining the Sunbelt now that the WAC is getting out of the football business? The future is not looking good for the small conferences in the BCS/FBS leagues.

Panama

August 21st, 2012
1:06 pm

A person SMART enough to know….. <——— Most misnamed commenter ever

potal dude

August 21st, 2012
1:21 pm

I was faculty at Portal High. Not only is he a player, but he’s a sincere and likeable kid. You’re gonna love him

Joe lockley

August 21st, 2012
1:21 pm

thanks guys we (the team) are focused and ready to make strives and improvements we appreciate thhe love pack the dome next thursday #StateofShock

Tonya Applin Hudson

August 21st, 2012
1:36 pm

So very proud of you, and if you ever need me im here you have my number

[...] I posted a blog about Joe Lockley. Click on the link, please. [...]

GSU is in Atlanta

August 21st, 2012
2:58 pm

Joe, thanks for coming to GSU and representing in such a great way, and please put these hater clowns into a #STATEofSHOCK

Pantherfan93

August 21st, 2012
3:04 pm

Considering Texas State left the WAC to go to the Sunbelt… not too worried.

A person SMART enough to know.....

August 21st, 2012
3:37 pm

Pantherfan93 good point BUT that is because the Big XII didn’t even think about adding them and they had to find a place to land.

portal dude

August 21st, 2012
4:17 pm

give ‘em hell Joe…Alby

Pantherfan93

August 21st, 2012
5:31 pm

SMART… Also UT Arlington is leaving the WAC for the SunBelt. I think it is a matter of location for the conference. The west, especially, NW has good football tradition. It just doesn’t have the same punch as it does in the south and east. It is where the bigger schools are. It is where the majority of recruiting happens for the high school players. That isn’t a knock on USC, Oregon or Washington, it is just how it is. A lot of recruits would pick a southern FCS school over a NW FBS school that isn’t named Oregon or Washington. So with the exit of southwestern teams the WAC was doomed. Unless the Big Sky teams just decide to go and try to transfer, it makes no sense for the WAC right now. It won’t really be missed.

[...] I posted a blog about Joe Lockley. Click on a link, please. [...]

GSUtimes2

August 22nd, 2012
10:21 am

A lot to like about this kid. He talks in terms of “we” which I think says a lot.

Also, just a note to the trolls. Can you guys chill every once in a while? A lot of these Q&A’s are a nice moment for student athletes to be recognized for their hard work. We get you don’t like GSU. But have some respect for the athletes that deserve more than to have their moment in the spotlight turn into a tinkle-tinkle contest over some perceived grudge.

Highly Respected Southern Troll

August 22nd, 2012
12:44 pm

@GSUtimes2 – Congratulations on one of the silliest comments I’ve seen on here in a while. I’m a State grad but it seems like every other thing I read on here is some snide comment about Statesboro or Georgia Southern.

With that said, was Joe recruited by Georgia Southern? I figure that would have been an obvious question since he’s from Bulloch County.

statesborodawg

August 22nd, 2012
1:45 pm

Come on JOE What about the portal Turpentine Festival That’s what portal is famous for!!!

GSUtimes2

August 23rd, 2012
10:21 am

@Southern Troll – Oh, snide comments? Did you get your wittle feewings hurwt? I’m so sawwy someone was mean to you on the internet. You know, you could always just NOT come to the blog dedicated to Georgia State sports. I know that is a novel idea…but it’s a start.

Well-Endowed Panther Fan

August 23rd, 2012
11:21 am

How can an FBS school have a rival that’s FCS? That doesn’t make any sense to, well, anyone.

[...] Just how good is Joe Lockley?  [...]