Remembering Ian Cole Lockwood

On the ninth year of his passing, it’s time to share with you the story that I wrote on Ian Cole Lockwood…may his memory continue to live on in all of us that knew him.
Another trip down memory lane…
The 2010 Navarre Raider season started off with a shutout win over Fort Walton Beach, 14-0.
In week two, the Raiders found themselves down to the Walton Braves at home at the half, 29-13. The defense stepped up and held the Braves to a single TD, and the offense outscored Walton, 29-7 in the second half, for a 42-36 come from behind win. They held the ground attack of Walton to minus 34 yards rushing on 19 carries.
Navarre, 2-0!
In Game 3, the Raiders hit the road and suffered a 42-21 loss to the Catholic Crusaders. This loss would eventually count as a “W” due to a forfeit by Catholic for playing an ineligible player.
The next week, Navarre would go on the road, the second of a three game road trip, this one against Louchiez Purifoy and the mighty Pine Forest Eagles. The home team would prevail, 33-13 and Navarre fell to 3-1. Little did they know, that this would be their last regular season loss.
Navarre ended their 3-game road trip with a 42-0 win over Crestview and improved to 4-1.
Back home to the friendly confines of Bennett C. Russell Stadium in Week 6. The wheels were starting to turn for this Raider program…a 49-20 win over Milton. Raiders raised their record to 5-1.
But, that was not the story of this contest…a young man from Navarre was fighting for his life (brain tumor). The Doctors told him that he would never take the field again to play for the Raiders. Do you think that this prognosis stopped Ian Lockwood from playing his final game as a Raider…you are right, it didn’t!
Ian would go on and score the final two TDs of his lifetime, at home in front of the Raider Nation. See, Ian was a fighter and he was not going to go down without a fight. I broadcast that game and it was hard for me to keep a dry eye.
Over the next four weeks, the Raiders would secure victories over Escambia at home 51-7; on the road at Pace, 31-21; at Tate, 41-6, and at home against Gulf Breeze, 34-24, to end the regular season at 9-1 and clinch the Raiders 3rd trip to State Playoffs.
All the while, Ian continued to grace the sidelines, despite the pain that he was suffering. His Mom, Denise stated, “he loved being on the sidelines where he coached and helped his teammates.”
This young man’s fight brought an entire community together and eventually the entire Emerald Coast came to know how special this young man was…Navarre would venture into the playoffs and their first stop was a tough one, at Niceville. The Raiders would come out on top, 28-7.
Week 2 of the Playoffs, they would travel to Pine Forest, a place that gave them their only loss of the regular season. The Raiders found themselves down late to the Eagles, 18-14, and the home team was driving to seal up the win. Louchiez Purifoy took over that last drive, but when he tried to fight for extra yardage, he fumbled and the Raiders recovered at their own 10 yard line.
With just over two minutes to play, the Raiders converted on two fourth down plays to keep the drive alive. QB Colton Kane would then find WR Brad Leggett on a 30 yard TD pass, giving them a 20-18 lead and the eventual victory.
Next up, Navarre’s first trip to the Region Finals against Lincoln. Unfortunately, the Raiders dream season would come to an end in a heartbreaking, 34-33 loss in triple overtime, ending Navarre’s season at 12-2.
During the Playoff run, one thing that was constant on the Raider sideline, Ian Lockwood was there to cheer on his teammates, the same young men that he grew up with during his NYSA Football days. The battle for Ian was starting to get tougher each and every day. The trips to Gainesville with his family were starting to take a toll on him.
But during those trips, Urban Meyer and the Florida Gator football team befriended Ian and the Lockwood family. Ian even received the game ball in the Gators Bowl Game that year in Tampa. This young man fought to the final bell, with no regrets. With his family and teammates by his side, Ian passed away on 28 January 2011.
I remember the day of his Memorial Service quite well…the rain would fall; but that would not dampen the spirits of a community brought together by one of their own, Ian Cole Lockwood. Both sides of Bennett C. Russell Stadium were filled with not only Raider faithful, but parts of the entire Panhandle Region. Florida Gator Head Coach Urban Meyer, Bob Tebow and strong safety, Ahmad Black were in attendance as well.
On this day, his Raider teammates would march onto the field carrying his jersey. This was a fitting tribute to a young man who lived each day of his 18+ years to the fullest, despite his many medical setbacks. Ian wore #10 and this is the only Navarre Raider number that has been retired.
As we are only 10 days away from kickoff, take a moment and remember this special young man, who brought a community together.
“Live for Today, Fight for Tomorrow, Live Strong”
Class of 2011, RB/WR Ian Lockwood, #10.

The Journey

As long as I can remember, I have always had an infatuation for sports.

Every morning when I was younger, I would get up and hurry downstairs to make sure that I was the first one to grab the sports section; so I could study and memorize all the box scores from the previous nights baseball, basketball, football or hockey games (depending on the season)…I didn’t want to miss a thing.

See, the internet had not come into existence as yet; so I couldn’t just pull up an app to catch up on all of the scores.  Newspaper and magazines were my main source of information.

I played baseball, basketball and football growing up (mostly sandlot) while living in a small town in northeastern Indiana just a block from our Elementary School, there was always something to do. 

Beside the normal playground equipment, we also had an outdoor basketball court, as well as a baseball field.  All you needed to do was pick up the phone and call your buddies and a game broke out.

As time went by I played organized baseball, football and wrestled (but was average at best).  Plus, I didn’t reach 5′ tall until I entered the eighth grade.  I picked up golf my freshman year and played it throughout my time in high school.

I spent a lot of my free time listening to the Cincinnati Reds on AM 700 WLW during the summer months and switched over to AM 1190 WOWO during the Fall and Winter months to catch Bob Chase’s call of Fort Wayne Komet hockey.

I just knew someday I wanted to broadcast sports; just didn’t know if I would ever get the opportunity. 

After graduating East Noble High School in 1981, I went to work at Pizza Hut and the Kendallville News-Sun; then entered the Air Force in 1984 and ended up retiring in 2008. 

The year I retired, while attending one of my son’s games in Pace, Florida, there was a man that was handing out flyers for his broadcasting business. He stated that he was looking for a broadcaster in Navarre…this was my opportunity!

Bill Brownell of Panhandle Sports Broadcasting taught me the ins and outs of broadcasting and later introduced me to Robert Williamson (owner of

Over the last 11 years I have broadcast baseball, basketball, football, soccer and softball via live streaming.  For the past six years during football season, you have been able to listen to my own show, Irish Bill’s Twist on Sports from The Twist and Culver’s in Navarre.

This past summer I started up my own website (with assistance from YourTek Professionals) and was invited to come on 100.3 FM, The Ticket Sports Network, on Saturday mornings from 9 AM to 12 PM, for a new show titled, The Southern Gentlemen Sports Show.

Broadcasting has opened up so many new opportunities and friendships for me along the way.  I am so honored to be able to share these young athletes stories to those that can not make it to games.  

Don’t ever give up on your dreams; you never know when opportunity is going to come knocking.

Kickers rule at 2020 Podyum All-Star Bowl

Players from FCS, D2, D3 and NAIA embarked on Joseph C Carter Park – Orange Bowl Field in Fort Lauderdale this past week. All they were looking for was a chance to perform and possibly catch the eye of a NFL or International scout.

Practices and team meetings took place throughout the day on Monday and Tuesday as well as evening fellowship.

Since there would not be kickoffs or punting during the game on Wednesday, the kickers took center stage on Tuesday afternoon and performed quite well.

D3 Emory & Henry Matt Seals, D2 Missouri S&T Ben Styron and D2 Miles College’s Brady Hammel took part in the three day event.

Even though the game itself was a mismatch; it didn’t take away from the perfection of these three kickers.

Emory & Henry
#4 – Matt Seals (1-1 FGs, 1-1 XPs)

Miles College
#41 – Brady Hammel (2-2 XPs)

Missouri S&T
#41 – Ben Styron (3-3 XPs, 2-2 FGs)

Now it is just a game of wait and see as to what the future holds…

Happy New Year 2020!

I hope that you enjoyed our new website in 2019!

I want to take this time to wish you all a Happy New Year from my family to yours…may the many blessings that you receive in 2020 be shared with others.

‪Celtic Blessing

May flowers always line your path and sunshine light your day.
May songbirds serenade you every step along the way.
May a rainbow run beside you in a sky that’s always blue.
And may happiness fill your heart each day your whole life through.‬