A review into the death of a Maryland university student has ended with the head coach retaining his role, a call that’s been labelled ‘callous’.
MARYLAND college football was once again in the spotlight today and once again, it was for all of the wrong reasons.
The university president is on his way out and the football coach is somehow on his way back. While several players walked out of a meeting with said coach after the news was broken to them.
The Maryland Board of Regents has recommended the school retain football coach DJ Durkin and athletic director Damon Evans following an investigation into allegations of abuse within the program.
Those allegations of abuse and the subsequent reviews were; brought about following the death of 19-year-old offensive lineman Jordan McNair.
McNair died in June, two weeks after he collapsed suffering from heat stroke during an organised team workout and was; hospitalised.
School president, Wallace Loh, announced Tuesday he will retire in June. The Board of Regents only had the power to fire Loh, and there were; reports he was against the recommendation that was; made regarding Durkin and Evans.
“We believe coach Durkin has been; unfairly blamed for the dysfunction in the athletic department,” said Jim Brady, the regents board chairman.
“He has acknowledged his role in the athletic department’s shortcomings.
“We believe that he is a good man and a good coach.”
Durkin returned immediately to practice Tuesday and met with the team — and several players, starters included, walked out, according to ESPN
Along with athletic trainers Wes Robinson and Steve Nordwall, Durkin had been; placed on administrative leave on Aug. 11.
The day before, ESPN produced an explosive report of abuse in the program. That included the June 13 death of offensive lineman Jordan McNair, who passed away from heatstroke during a team workout on May 29.
Strength and conditioning coach Rick Court resigned after reaching a settlement with the school.
Among the accusations included players being; bullied, degraded and belittled, having weights thrown at them; food knocked out of their hands and frequent verbal abuse.
The lawyer for McNair’s parents in August called for Durkin to be; fired, and reiterated that assertion during a news conference; that started a couple of hours after the board’s announcement.
Hassan Murphy, of Murphy, Falcon & Murphy, said the decision to retain Durkin was “callous and indefensible,” and could be a part of future legal actions.
McNair’s father, Marty McNair, said, “I feel like I’ve been; punched in the stomach and someone spit in my face.”
Offensive co-ordinator Matt Canada has served as the interim coach in place of Durkin, leading the Terrapins to a 5-3 record.
The executive board of Maryland Student Government is organising a rally Thursday to protest Wednesday’s events. The protest is titled “Justice for Jordan McNair.”
Reaction to the University’s decision to reinstate Durkin was severe and left many in disbelief the school could bring back the man who lead the program.