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Jake Locker Heisman Hype: Hometown Hero Puts Family First

You’d think a player with Jake Locker’s ability and pro potential would be all about the fame and money, looking to capitalize on his raw talent at the next level. Instead, Locker’s a rare case of a hometown kid looking to make his family proud, while also trying to resurrect the Washington football program.

This morning, Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times took a look at Locker in his profile of the Heisman contender.

“He doesn’t want this thing to be about him, but to be about the team,” says his father, Scott. “He’s always been that way.”

And what he really hopes he carries back to Ferndale is a memento of a UW bowl game.

A Heisman victory in December? Hearing his name called as the No. 1 pick in the NFL draft next April? Right now, a Holiday Bowl appearance — heck, even a Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl bid — sounds just as good.

Locker has twice decided to give up his chance at the professional level, turning away a baseball contract out of high school and staying for his senior year at UW instead of entering the NFL draft. While he did sign a baseball contract with the Los Angeles Angels in 2009, football appears to be the future for Locker.

After toiling in mediocrity under Tyrone Willingham during his freshman and sophomore years, Locker has flourished under new head coach Steve Sarkisian. His numbers are up, and with it his draft stock has also risen. The hopes for the Huskies are high this year, centering around the strength of their senior quarterback.

The Huskies kickoff the 2010 campaign at BYU this Saturday.

For more on the Huskies, visit SB Nation’s UWDawgPound.