Derek Kief played in 51 games during his Alabama career, which spanned from 2014-18. During his final three years in Tuscaloosa, Maryland head coach Mike Locksley was on staff under Nick Saban.
Locksley, the former New Mexico head coach and Maryland offensive coordinator, took an analyst job under Saban in 2016. He was bumped up to co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach in 2017. In 2018, he became the team’s sole coordinator. The next year, he returned to Maryland as head coach.
Maryland’s season got off to a hot start. The Terrapins hung 142 combined points on Howard and Syracuse to start the year. They summarily fell apart after that. After the 2-0 start, Maryland finished 3-9, with an October 5 win over Rutgers the final ‘W’ of the season for Locksley’s team.
As he looks to elevate the team from that disappointing first year, he’s adding a bit more Alabama flare to the coaching staff. Kief will join as a graduate assistant, AL.com Alabama beat writer Matt Zenitz reports.
Hearing that former Alabama wide receiver Derek Kief is getting into coaching and has been hired as a graduate assistant at Maryland under former Alabama OC Mike Locksley
— Matt Zenitz (@mzenitz) March 5, 2020
Kief wasn’t a major contributor at as an offensive weapon at Alabama, but played significant time on special teams during his career. He finished with 11 total catches for 101 yards and two touchdowns during his college career.
According to Saturday Tradition, after going undrafted, Kief had a workout with the Buffalo Bills, but couldn’t catch on with a team. He is now making an early move to coaching, one year after the end of his college career.
There are certainly worse things one can do than add more guys with five years of experience playing under Nick Saban to their coaching staff. The Terrapins open their season on September 5 against Towson.