WALKER – Parents were talking both football and education at a signing ceremony Wednesday, Feb. 6, for two Walker High School athletes.
B.J. Lockhart Jr., 2018 Defensive MVP of the All-Parish Team, signed with Garden City (Kan.) Community College.
Calvin Watson, named to the All-Parish Team as a defensive back, signed with Grambling State University.
“It feels good,” to get a chance play on the college level, Lockhart said before his signing ceremony. “Most people don’t get the opportunity. It feels good to be recognized and get offered,” he said.
Lockhart said he was looking forward to “meeting up with people from other schools and making up a team and win a national championship.”
In 2016, Garden City won the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) championship 25-22 over Arizona Western Community College.
“It is a great opportunity. I’m humbled and blessed to be able to play at the next level,” Watson said, who is projected to play cornerback at Grambling.
Watson said he was attracted to Grambling because, “It’s very family oriented. My parents wanted me to go there.
“I love the college and I feel like I can do great things there,” he said.
“He got an opportunity to continue playing football and continue his education and go on to a four-year school,” said B.J. Lockhart Sr., about his son’s signing.
“Garden City is a good college. They went to the national championship last year,” the elder Lockhart said.
His son’s athletic success did not happen overnight, Lockhart said.
“All the hard work paid off. It’s been a process since he was 8 years old,” he said. “His work ethic got him here today.”
Lockhart, (5-foot-9, 190), could see playing time on both sides of the ball for first-year coach Tom Minnick, who coached Arizona Western in that 2016 title game against Garden City.
The Broncbusters were 10-1 in 2018, reaching the NJCAA championship game, falling 10-9 to East Mississippi Community College.
Lockhart was named the parish’s top defensive player for compiling 79 total tackles – 45 solo – and eight interceptions. On offense, he rushed for 525 yards and six touchdowns, while also throwing two touchdown passes in the “Wildcat” formation.
Meanwhile, Calvin Watson Sr. is familiar with the road to college.
“He’s the third one to go to college,” Watson said of his children. “Now it’s his turn. We’re just waiting for the next four years."
“I’m looking forward to him graduating, then I can quit my job,” Watson said with a smile.
The younger Watson, (5-10, 175), also contributed on defense to the Wildcats’ 8-3 record and Class 5A playoff appearance last year with 65 tackles, two interceptions, forcing one fumble and a fumble recovery.
He will be playing for coach Broderick Fobbs, who led Grambling to Southwestern Athletic Conference titles in 2016 and 2017. The Tigers were 6-5 in 2018 and 4-3 in the SWAC.
“We’re proud of these two young men and the hard work and effort they put into their careers,” Assistant Principal Tim Rogers said at the signing ceremony in the school library.
“It’s exciting here for the school to see students grow and go on to continue their careers and education,” Rogers said. “We look forward to them coming back and telling us about their college experiences.”
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