Maryland football reportedly finalizing deal to make Kevin Steele new defensive coordinator

Maryland football is reportedly finalizing a deal to hire Kevin Steele as the program’s defensive coordinator, according to ESPN.

Steele is expected to become the Terps fourth defensive coordinator since coach Mike Locksley took over the program in 2019. Steele will be replacing Brian Stewart, who served as the defensive coordinator during the 2021 season.


Steele was the defensive coordinator at Auburn, LSU, Alabama and Clemson before serving as the interim coach for Tennessee last season after the Volunteers fired Jeremy Pruitt. Steele was also the head coach at Baylor from 1999-2002 after spending three seasons as a linebackers coach for the Carolina Panthers.

Despite Maryland winning its first bowl game since 2010, the Terps had one of the worst defenses in the Big Ten Conference, ranking 13th in points allowed (30.7) and 12th in total yards allowed (404.3).


The Terps, once again, struggled to generate turnovers, ranking 13th in the conference in interceptions with six. Maryland gave up 40 or more points four times last season, including 66 points to Ohio State and 59 points to Michigan, which ended up playing in the College Football Playoff.

Maryland’s defense took some hits after the regular season, as defensive lineman Sam Okuayinonu, linebacker Lawtez Rogers, and defensive backs Nick Cross and Jordan Mosely declared for the 2022 NFL draft, while linebackers Branden Jennings, Terrence Lewis and Deshawn Holt transferred.

However, the Terps have some key players returning. Senior defensive back Jakorian Bennett, defensive lineman Ami Finau and defensive lineman Greg Rose will use their extra year of eligibility to play another season in College Park.

Maryland will also have linebacker and West Virginia transfer VanDarius Cowan, as well as St. Frances linebacker Jaishawn Barham, one of the prized players from the Terps’ 2022 recruiting class.