Photo 1: Former Kansas State and NFL wide receiver Kevin Lockett poses with fans during the 67th annual North Central Kansas Men & Boys Rally at Beloit High School. Photo by David Burke.
Photo 2 Children at Beloit Elementary School. Photo by Russ Fincham.
Former NFL star speaks to 2,000 in seven events
BELOIT, Kan.–– March 7 was a full day for UM Men and former Kansas State and NFL wide receiver Kevin Lockett. They visited two elementary schools, two middle schools, one high school, and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. The long day concluded with a dinner at Beloit UMC and the 67th Annual “Men & Boys Rally” at Beloit High School.
Originally called the “Men’s Rally,” boys were added to the event long ago. And while the event has kept its name, it’s clear from the poster and publicity that women and girls are invited as well.
The event was organized by UM Men leaders Charley File and Kevin Marozas.
Lockett, newly appointed chief executive officer of the Olathe-based Kansas Bioscience Authority, talked about the decisions that are constantly made in life and how one wrong decision could ruin plans for life.
The Tulsa, Oklahoma, native talked about a major mistake he made when he joined his high school basketball teammates in a hotel beer party. His coaches busted the party and asked for a show of hands of those who had been drinking. Lockett raised his hand and was suspended from school for two weeks.
In spite of the mistake, he still received an athletic scholarship from Kansas State University.
“By God’s grace and His mercy, he gave me an opportunity,” Lockett said.
Once in college, Lockett said, he looked upon the team’s pregame chapel services as a “good luck charm” rather than devotion to God.
“Even though I wasn’t soaking it up like a sponge,” he said, “there were pieces that found a resting place in my life.”
By the time he got into the NFL, first as a second-round draft pick with the Kansas City Chiefs and then the Washington Redskins, Jacksonville Jaguars and New York Jets, “God was after me in a tenacious manner,” Lockett said.
The people he was around the most, whether it was in the weight room, during practices and meetings or going out for dinner after games, were “all big believers” who inspired his faith and challenged the depth of his Christianity.
“Just because you have accepted Christ, that’s not the end,” Lockett said. “That’s the beginning.”
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This article was adapted from a news release by David Burke, communications director for the Great Plains Annual Conference