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Mike Locksley -- 2018 FootballScoop Offensive Coordinator of the Year

FootballScoop is proud to announce that Mike Locksley is the 2018 FootballScoop Offensive Coordinator of the Year presented by AstroTurf as selected by prior winners.

When it's all said and done, part of Nick Saban's coaching legacy will be starting the Saban Fellowship for Once and Future Head Coaches, and no student epitomizes its effect more than Locksley. He arrived after the 2015 season out of a job, after Randy Edsall's staff was fired at Maryland. He spent the 2016 season sitting and learning as an offensive analyst, then was promoted to co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach in 2017 before running the offense himself this season. After a successful 2018, Locksley will return to Maryland next season -- this time as head coach.

To get the Maryland job, his dream job, Locksley had to succeed as Alabama's offensive coordinator, and succeed he did. Locksley took the Crimson Tide's offense in new directions, in the process producing the most efficient and explosive attack in school history.

The Tide offense started with sophomore Tua Tagovailoa, who, in his first season as a starter, posted the second-most efficient season in FBS history. The Hawaii native completed 67.7 percent of his passes for 3,353 yards (11.4 yards per attempt) with 37 touchdowns against four interceptions. Tagovailoa finished second nationally in yards per attempt, efficiency and, subsequently, Heisman Trophy voting while taking home the Maxwell Award, the Walter Camp Award and the SEC Offensive Player of the Year award.

Mike Locksley

As a unit, Alabama rolled up 527.6 yards per game, 7.92 per play and scored 47.9 points per game -- the latter two ranking second in FBS. Of Locksley's 866 play calls to date, 254 (nearly 30 percent) went for at least 20 yards, 43 gained at least 30, 28 gained 40, 18 gained 50 and eight went for at least 60 -- all of which ranked among the top 10 nationally.

In addition to being explosive, Alabama's offense was also excellent situationally. Alabama's third down success rate (75-of-142) trailed only Army nationally, and 48 of their 68 red zone penetrations found the end zone, a 70.59 percent success rate that ranked 20th in the country.

Alabama has already set a single-season school record with 6,859 yards through 13 games, besting a 2016 team that played 15 games. Alabama's 623 total points are also a school record, as are its 76 touchdowns. In the (highly) unlikely event Alabama is shutout by Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl, the 2018 Tide offense will still break Alabama's single-season scoring average record by a point and a half per game. Alabama's 7.92 yards per play are also on pace to shatter the school record of 7.1 per play set in 2013.

While Tagovailoa drew the headlines, Alabama ranked in the top 20 nationally at 5.34 yards per carry. Senior Damien Harris led the way with 771 yards and seven touchdowns on 162 carries, while sophomore Najee Harris rushed for 679 yards and four scores on 6.66 per carry and junior Josh Jacobs led the club with 11 touchdowns on just 94 attempts; he needs just five yards to give Alabama three 500-yard rushers.

Sophomore Jerry Jeudy won the Biletnikoff Award as the nation's top receiver after catching 59 passes for 1,103 yards and 12 touchdowns, while freshman Jaylen Waddle hauled in 41 passes for 803 yards and seven scores and sophomore Henry Ruggs III snared 10 touchdowns on 42 grabs. Tight end Irv Smith, Jr., caught 38 passes for 648 yards and seven touchdowns.

In addition to the national awards for Tagovailoa and Jeudy, the pair were joined on the AP All-America team by junior left tackle Jonah Williams and senior center Ross Pierschbacher.

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A Washington, DC native, Locksley played defensive back at Towson from 1988-91 before jumping into coaching as the defensive backs coach and special teams coordinator at his alma mater. From there, he criss-crossed the country with stops at Navy Prep, Pacific, Maryland, Florida and Illinois before becoming New Mexico's head coach in 2009. He returned to Maryland in 2012, a stay that lasted through 2015, where he served as interim head coach in the second half of the '15 campaign.

He officially returned for his third stint in College Park, this time as head coach, on Dec. 4.

“Michael has done an outstanding job for us during his time at Alabama and we are pleased and happy for him to become the head coach at Maryland," Saban said. "We always want our coaches to grow and advance in the profession and he has worked very hard to help our program and our players be successful. He did a great job organizing our offensive staff, and I think his leadership contributed to that in a very positive way. The attributes that make him a great teacher and a successful coordinator are the same characteristics that will make him a tremendous head coach. We appreciate all he has done to contribute to the success of our program at Alabama. I know he will do an excellent job at Maryland, and we wish Mike, Kia and their entire family the best of luck.”

The FootballScoop Coaches of the Year awards presented by AstroTurf are the only set of awards that recognize the most outstanding position coaches in college football. The finalists (Kendal Briles [Houston], Ryan Day [Ohio State], Tony Elliott and Jeff Scott [Clemson], Chip Long [Notre Dame], Rich Skrosky [FIU] and David Yost [Utah State]) were selected based off of nominations by coaches, athletic directors, and athletic department personnel. The prior winners selected this year's winner.

Locksley will receive his award and be recognized at an event at the AFCA Convention in January. He also won the Broyles Award earlier this month.

Previous winners of the Offensive Coordinator of the Year award are Kevin Wilson (Oklahoma, 2008), Bryan Harsin (Boise State, 2009), Gus Malzahn (Auburn, 2010), Kliff Kingsbury (Houston, 2011 and Texas A&M, 2012), Philip Montgomery (Baylor, 2013), Tom Herman (Ohio State, 2014), Lincoln Riley (Oklahoma, 2015), Lane Kiffin (Alabama, 2016) and Josh Heupel (Missouri, 2017).

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2nd Nationally - Yards Per Play

2nd Nationally - Plays of 30+ Yards

2nd Nationally - Scoring

2nd Nationally - Third Down Conversions

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