Mike Locksley has hit a home run with his latest hire. Maryland is expected to bring in longtime SEC assistant coach Kevin Steele to be the next defensive coordinator for the program, per multiple reports.

ESPN’s Chris Low is reporting that the Terps are “finalizing a deal” to make Steele the next defensive coordinator. He will replace Brian Stewart, who served as the program’s DC during the 2021 campaign.

Per ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg, Stewart is expected to remain on staff in College Park. He will serve as an assistant head coach for defense and continue to work with defensive backs.

Steele did not coach during the 2021 season. He was most recently the defensive coordinator at Auburn, where he was on Gus Malzahn’s staff from 2016-2020.

Steele has also had stops at LSU, Alabama, Tennessee, Florida State, Clemson, Nebraska as an assistant coach. From 1999-2002 he was the head coach at Baylor.

Maryland’s defense struggled mightily during the 2021 season. The Terrapins ranked 13th in the B1G in scoring defense and passing defense, 12th in total defense and 11th in run defense. Thanks to an explosive offense, Locksley’s team was still able to finish the year 7-6, defeating Virginia Tech in the Pinstripe Bowl to secure a winning record.

While there are no guarantees in college football, this certainly seems like a great hire by Locksley.