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Maryland hires Josh Gattis as offensive coordinator

New Maryland offensive coordinator Josh Gattis has experience in the Big Ten having coached at Michigan from 2019 to 2021. (Paul Sancya/AP)
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Maryland football has finalized its coaching staff for the 2023 season with the additions of offensive coordinator Josh Gattis and safeties coach Zac Spavital, the program announced Thursday.

Gattis, who will also coach quarterbacks at Maryland, was the offensive coordinator at Miami in 2022, but the school fired him after one season. The Hurricanes logged 23.6 points and 367.1 yards per game. Gattis has experience in the Big Ten, working as Michigan’s offensive coordinator from 2019 to 2021. Gattis won the 2021 Broyles Award, given to the nation’s top assistant.

“The additions of Josh and Zac really bolsters our already strong coaching staff,” Coach Michael Locksley said in a statement. “Josh and I have a strong relationship and a proven track record of working together to produce a potent offense. He and I share many of the same philosophies, and it should be a very smooth transition. Zac comes to us with a history of being part of defenses that have a tremendous amount of success, especially when it comes to being aggressive and taking the ball away,”

Gattis will be part of a new-look offensive staff after Locksley lost his top two offensive assistants after last season. Locksley recently hired longtime college head coach Kevin Sumlin as the co-coordinator and tight ends coach.

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Gattis worked with Locksley at Alabama in 2018, when Locksley led the record-setting Crimson Tide offense and Gattis served as the co-coordinator and wide receivers coach.

At Maryland, Gattis will inherit an offense led by quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa, who will be Maryland’s starter for the fourth straight season. The Terps have steadily improved under Locksley, and Tagovailoa has been the program’s most prominent player as he’s broken numerous school records.

Spavital joins the Terps after serving as Texas State’s defensive coordinator. He’ll take over a safeties unit that has a pair of returning starters in Beau Brade and Dante Trader Jr.

Locksley had to replace three assistants this offseason: Offensive coordinator Dan Enos left for the same job at Arkansas. Co-offensive coordinator and tight ends coach Mike Miller took a job at Charlotte as the offensive coordinator. Safeties coach Wes Neighbors departed for the same role at Mississippi.

In 2022, Locksley’s team finished 8-5, the program’s most wins in a season since 2010. The offense must replace all but one starter on the offensive line. That position group took a hit recently when starting left guard Mason Lunsford transferred to LSU. And Tagovailoa will rely on some less experienced wide receivers taking on larger roles this season. Defensively, the Terps showed progress through last season under first-year coordinator Brian Williams but will have some voids to fill, particularly at the cornerback position and on the defensive line. Maryland’s spring practices begin later this month.