Western Michigan linebackers coach Tem Lukabu is joining the staff of San Francisco 49ers coach Chip Kelly, according to sources.
The highly regarded Lukabu was hired by Western Michigan coach P.J. Fleck in mid-January after spending this past season as Florida International’s linebackers coach. In his lone season at FIU, Lukabu tutored sophomore Anthony Wint, a second-team All-Conference USA selection.
Lukabu spent 2014 as the outside linebackers coach at his alma mater, Colgate. That was after two seasons as a defensive assistant with the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Lukabu spent his first year with Tampa Bay working with the defensive line before moving to linebackers for his final campaign.
Prior to joining the Buccaneers, he had a two-month stint in the winter of 2012 as Fordham’s defensive coordinator and linebackers coach. Lukabu was Rutgers’s outside linebackers coach from ’10–11 and Rhode Island’s linebackers coach from ’08–09. He also worked at Rutgers from ’06–07 as a player development coach and graduate assistant.
Lukabu was a star linebacker at Colgate from 2000–03. During his final two seasons, the program won consecutive Patriot League championships and he was the conference’s Defensive Player of the Year both seasons, a first for the league.
In Lukabu’s final year, Colgate advanced to the FCS national game. A Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo, native, he was also a third-team All-America selection that season.
San Francisco had a 5–11 record this past season under former coach Jim Tomsula, who was fired in early January. Kelly replaced him less than two weeks later after being fired by the Philadelphia Eagles in late December.
Kelly had a 26–21 record with the Eagles in three seasons that included one playoff appearance.