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Maryland football head coach Michael Locksley signs five-year contract extension

Locksley’s new contract runs through the 2026 season and could add two additional years with incentives.

Photo Courtesy of Zach Bland/Maryland Terrapins
UMTerps

Maryland football head coach Michael Locksley has signed a new five-year contract that will keep him at the school through at least the 2026 season, per a release.

The contract could also add up to two additional years with incentives, according to the release.

“Maryland is not only my dream job, but it’s also home,” Locksley said in the release. “We are building something special here in College Park and I’m extremely grateful and honored to continue to serve as the head football coach at this outstanding university. I appreciate the trust President Pines and Damon Evans have shown in me and I’m thankful for all of the support that our administration has given to make sure our student-athletes are in a position to be successful both on and off the field.”

With his new contract, Locksley will receive $4 million per year — $600,000 in annual base salary and $3.4 million in supplemental annual income. Formerly the lowest paid coach in the Big Ten, Locksley’s supplemental annual income will increase by $100,000 each season.

If Maryland wins seven games in the 2022 season, the contract will automatically be extended another year to 2027. If the Terps win seven games in 2023, the contract will extend to 2028.

Locksley can make up to $1.525 million in competitive goals compensation. Certain incentives include $50,000 for being a non-College Football Playoff bowl participant and $70,000 for winning a non-College Football Playoff bowl. He can also obtain up to $300,000 in regular season win incentives, earning $100,000 if he achieves each of the seven, eight and nine win marks.

In terms of buyouts, if Locksley’s contract were to be terminated, the university would owe him 65% of his total remaining annual base salary and supplemental annual income within 60 days of contract termination.

Locksley’s coaching history with the Terps dates back to 1997, when he was hired as Maryland’s running backs coach. He served that position along with being a recruiting coordinator until 2002.

After stints at multiple schools, Locksley returned to Maryland to be its offensive coordinator in 2012 and remained at the school until 2015. Locksley finished the 2015 season as the interim head coach after Randy Edsall’s contract was terminated, and he landed at Alabama after Maryland hired D.J. Durkin. Under Nick Saban, Locksley was a part of the Crimson Tide’s 2017 national championship team.

The opportunity for Locksley to accept his dream job presented itself in December 2018, and he was hired as the program’s 37th head coach.

“Coach Locksley uses the mantra ‘The Best Is Ahead’ and it is for Maryland football,” Maryland athletics director Damon Evans said in the release. “Coach Locks has done a great job revitalizing our football program. Last season, culminating with the emphatic win in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl, demonstrated the progress he is making. Coach Locks continues to build our program and has high expectations and we know he is the man to lead us there. We are thrilled he will be leading our football program into the future as the best is certainly ahead.”

The Terps struggled with a 3-9 record in 2019 and went 2-3 in only five games in the 2020 season which was truncated due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Locksley’s program took a major step forward in the 2021 season, though, securing its first winning record since 2014. Maryland’s 54-10 victory over Virginia Tech in the 2021 Pinstripe Bowl was its first bowl win since 2010.

The 2022 season will mark the third consecutive year for Locksley with his starting quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa, and they will look to build on the momentum from last season.

“There is still plenty of work to be done to elevate this program to where I believe it should be nationally, but I know that we have the right people and structure in place to ensure that the best is ahead for the Terps,” Locksley said.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated with specifics of Locksley’s contract extension, acquired via a Maryland Public Information Act Request.