Jerry Claiborne, the Maryland football coach and a University of Kentucky graduate, will be contacted by Kentucky about its vacant coaching job.

Cliff Hagan, Kentucky's athletic director, said Claiborne will be on a list of candidates to succeed Fran Curci, who was fired last week.

"As the committee gets on with it, we'll have to talk to Claiborne to find out what he's thinking," Hagan said. "Jerry's not applied for the job, and he's obviously in a very settled situation at Maryland. We haven't gotten around to inviting him to talk to us yet . . . Obviously, being a Kentucky boy, he'd be one who would have a lot of name recognition here."

Claiborne said, "I haven't been contacted by Kentucky and I don't know anything about it . . . Right now, anything that would be said about it would just be speculation and I certainly don't want to get involved in any of that."

Claiborne played for Paul Bryant at Kentucky, graduating in 1950. A native of Hopkinsville, Ky., Claiborne has been mentioned as a successor to the last three Kentucky coaches. In 10 seasons at Maryland, Claiborne is 77-37-3, with this season's 4-6-1 record being his worst. Including 10 years at Virginia Tech, he is 138-76-5.

Dan Devine, a former Notre Dame coach, also is mentioned in speculation. Others: Howard Schnellenberger of Miami (Fla.), Dick Crum of North Carolina, Roy Kidd of Eastern Kentucky, John Cooper of Tulsa, Charlie Bailey of the present Kentucky staff and Bobby Collins of Southern Mississippi.