Alabama offensive coordinator Mike Locksley, the next football coach at Maryland, was named Tuesday as the winner of the Frank Broyles Award, given annually to the top assistant coach in the Football Bowl Subdivision.
The 48-year-old Locksley was credited with helping make the Crimson Tide a more explosive offense this season behind sophomore quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, who is the favorite to win this year’s Heisman Trophy Saturday in New York.
Top-ranked Alabama averaged 47.9 points and 527.6 yards per game, breaking school records for points scored (623), total offense (6,859), offensive touchdowns (77) and passing yards (4,231) in a season.
Tagovailoa, who took over as the starter after replacing Jalen Hurts and leading Alabama to last year’s national championship, passed for 3,353 yards and broke the school record with 37 touchdown passes and only four interceptions.
After Locksley’s second season on Nick Saban’s on-field coaching staff — he served as co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach last season after joining the staff as an offensive analyst in 2016 — he was able to secure another head coaching job.
Offensive coordinator Matt Canada, who served as interim coach after DJ Durkin was placed on administrative leave in mid-August before being fired Oct. 31, and Michigan assistant head coach Pep Hamilton, were also finalists for the Maryland job.
Before going to Tuscaloosa, Locksley served for four seasons as offensive coordinator at Maryland, and was named the team's interim coach for the last six games of the 2015 season after Randy Edsall was fired. He went 1-5 as interim, starting with a 31-30 loss to Penn State at M&T Bank Stadium and ending with a 46-41 shootout win at Rutgers.
Locksley had previously served as the head coach for a little over two seasons at New Mexico. The Lobos went 1-11 in each of the first two years and were 0-4 when Locksley was fired during the 2011 season.
His tenure in Albuquerque was tumultuous off the field, including a former staff member filing an age and sex discrimination complaint against Locksley, as well as a former assistant alleging that he was punched by Locksley during an altercation. The complaint with the staff member was dropped and Locksley served a 10-day suspension without pay for the altercation with the assistant coach.