MANHATTAN (AP) — Just imagine what the conversations will be like in the Lockett household around Thanksgiving dinner if Tyler Lockett can pick up a few more yards and score a couple more touchdowns.
Might start off something like this: “So, Dad, what does it feel like to be No. 2?”
After another eye-opening performance in No. 9 Kansas State’s 48-14 romp over Oklahoma State on Saturday, Lockett moved past current Packers star Jordy Nelson for second in school history in yards receiving and tied Quincy Morgan for second in career touchdown catches.
All that’s standing between him and No. 1 is his father, Kevin Lockett.
“A lot of people have been telling me I’ve been getting really close,” Tyler Lockett said. “You get anxious every now and then, but it’s not going to happen in one game. We still have four games left. If it happens, it’s going to happen. You just have to go out there and play. You might look to see where you’re at the end of games, but as long as we win, I’m OK with that.”
Especially with some big games coming up. The grind starts when Kansas State (7-1, 5-0 Big 12) visits No. 7 TCU on Saturday. Matchups with West Virginia and Baylor also loom.
Lockett finished with six catches for 94 yards and a touchdown against the Cowboys, giving him 2,877 yards receiving for his career. His father piled up 3,032 yards from 1993-96. And the youngster now has 23 touchdown catches, three back of his dad.
“It would be really cool if all those things happened on senior night. That would be an awesome experience,” Lockett said, “but I can only control what I can control.”
Either way, Lockett’s father is happy the records will stay in the family.
“He said if anybody broke the records, he wanted it to be his son,” Tyler Lockett said.
None of this was expected when Lockett came out of high school in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He was hardly recruited by the Sooners and Cowboys, the two major in-state schools. So he wound up taking the family path to Kansas State, where his uncle Aaron Lockett was also a star receiver.
“When he came, he could not catch a ball any better that I can, and he has worked at it,” Kansas State coach Bill Snyder said. “You’ve heard me say so many times that he is the last guy off the field. He’s out catching punts, and he keeps the quarterbacks out there until they feel like they are not going to miss him. He works at it, and he cares.”
Lockett was voted second-team All-Big 12 as an all-purpose player as a freshman and emerged as one of the league’s best wide receivers as a sophomore. Last year, he was first-team all-conference as a kick returner and wide receiver. He was among the nation’s leading wide receivers, averaging more than 100 yards per game, even though he missed some time with an injury.
He hasn’t slowed down as a senior, despite facing the opponent’s best cornerback every week.
Lockett has caught 49 passes for 682 yards and five touchdowns, including 12 catches for 125 yards and two scores against Texas Tech. He also had his first career punt return touchdown.
In Saturday night’s blowout of Oklahoma State, Lockett made a dazzling fingertip grab on a deep ball down the sideline, doing a somersault at the end of it. He also pulled in a touchdown pass with some nimble footwork in the corner of the end zone.
“I see all the stuff he does and I’m amazed by it,” quarterback Jake Waters said. “He’s such a special player.”