Report: Chargers Hiring Former Utah Coach Kiel McDonald To Lead Running Backs

Feb 22, 2024, 9:49 AM


Utah running backs coach Kiel McDonlad looks on during fall camp on Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2019, at Rice-Eccles Stadium. (Courtesy of Deseret News)

(Courtesy of Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY – The Los Angeles Chargers plan to hire former Utah Utes and current USC Trojans running back coach Kiel McDonald to the same position on Jim Harbaugh’s coaching staff, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Former Utah RB coach joins Jim Harbaugh’s staff

The NFL insider reported McDonald’s addition to Harbaugh’s staff on Thursday, February 22.

RELATED: Jim Harbaugh Returns To NFL To Coach Los Angeles Chargers

“Chargers are finalizing a deal to hire USC RB coach Kiel McDonald as their running back coach,” Schefter shared on X, formerly known as Twitter. “McDonald had chances to become a college offensive coordinator but opted to become Jim Harbaugh’s RB coach. At Utah and USC, McDonald worked with backs such as Zack Moss and Marshawn Lloyd, a top prospect in this year’s draft.”

“A trend that has emerged this winter: many college coaches are tired of the transfer portal, the NIL money and the new NCAA world – and prefer to work in the NFL. Many college coaches already have left; many more want to,” Schefter added in another post.

Before joining the Trojans in 2022, McDonald coached Utah’s running backs from 2017-21. McDonald helped award-winning running backs, including Zack Moss, Ty Jordan, and Tavion Thomas.

The former Utah coach also helped the Utes win the Pac-12 Conference in 2021 and play in the 2022 Rose Bowl Game.

About Kiel McDonald

In college, McDonald played cornerback at Sacramento City College, Arizona, and Sacramento State. He’s from Milpitas, California and went to high school in Colorado.

Before his time at Utah, McDonald coached at San Jose City College, Arizona State, and Eastern Washington. McDonald was an intern for the San Francisco 49ers in 2010. Harbaugh coached the 49ers from 2011-14.

After coaching the Michigan Wolverines to a College Football Playoff National Championship, Harbaugh was hired as head coach of the Chargers in January.

Kyle Ireland is a Sports Producer and Locals in the NFL Insider for KSLSports.com. Listen to Ireland on Yards After College: An NFL Podcast. Follow him on X (@kyleireland), Threads (@kyleirelandksl), and Instagram (@kyleirelandksl).

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Report: Chargers Hiring Former Utah Coach Kiel McDonald To Lead Running Backs