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ESPN.com cover story - “Toxic” football culture at MD under Durkin

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Durkin has been placed on leave.  From an e-mail, just received.
 

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Dear Terps,

I am extremely concerned by the allegations of unacceptable behaviors by members of our football staff detailed in recent media reports. We are committed to fully investigating the program.  

At this time, the best decision for our football program is to place Maryland Head Football Coach DJ Durkin on leave so we can properly review the culture of the program. This is effective immediately. Matt Canada will serve as interim head coach.

The external review into the tragic death of Jordan McNair continues, and we have committed to releasing publicly the report being prepared by an independent and national expert.

The safety and well-being of our student-athletes is our highest priority. These alleged behaviors are not consistent with the values I expect all of our staff to adhere to and we must do better.

You will be hearing from me as our work continues to rebuild the culture of respect in our football program.

Damon Evans

 

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I see no way he should be allowed back if the many stories from multiple sources are true. The guy was not ready to take on a program when he wasn't able to keep his players safe. 

Yelling is one thing. Not reacting to a player clearly in distress is unforgivable.

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11 hours ago, Tony-OH said:

I see no way he should be allowed back if the many stories from multiple sources are true. The guy was not ready to take on a program when he wasn't able to keep his players safe. 

Yelling is one thing. Not reacting to a player clearly in distress is unforgivable.

If it's true. The Duke Lacrosse scandal makes me wonder. One story that everyone is quoting from.  I will say no more until the investigation is done. And I know exactly where that is headed.

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On 8/12/2018 at 10:43 AM, Satyr3206 said:

If it's true. The Duke Lacrosse scandal makes me wonder. One story that everyone is quoting from.  I will say no more until the investigation is done. And I know exactly where that is headed.

I understand that point of view.  Here's my problem with it:

- Let's say for the point of argument that the facts in the article(s) are not substantially true.  Then the MD administration should have been ready from jump street to come out with their own finding of facts to refute the accusations.  Yes, I know the "official investigation" is not due to complete for another 6 weeks, but a kid died...I would trust (hope?) that after 2 months of their own investigating, the administration would know whether they had a safety issue with the football program or not and have the facts, or at least the outline of a case, to back up their argument.

- Now, the other side, let's say the article is primarily true.  Then the administration is either covering up the safety issues (in which case the accountability...criminal accountability...goes way higher than a coach or an AD), or they are mismanaging their own investigation and truly don't know the facts.

Neither scenario speaks to any sort of management control over the situation.  The clear panic "firings" of the training staff...and then when there was public outcry on social media the day after, the firing of the coach...leads me to believe that the University of Maryland administration does not have control over this situation - 2 months after a student died.

The difference with the Duke scenario is that the incident and then the reports literally happened overnight (not after 2 months) and the Duke players had to acquire their own legal resources to do the investigation.  That took time and only when the legal team started to uncover the real facts could they make their case to the public.  The MD football program has had the administration doing this investigation for them for 2 months.  If the points in the article are not true, they should at least be able to come out and state that they are not.  The fact that they didn't, says a lot.

Personally, I think the Chancellor....or maybe the Governor...needs to step-in and clean house.  Shut the football program down, fire Evans and Loh, and then hire (beg) someone like Freeman Hrabowski to come in and restore sound management control.

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3 minutes ago, JohnBKistler said:

I understand that point of view.  Here's my problem with it:

- Let's say for the point of argument that the facts in the article(s) are not substantially true.  Then the MD administration should have been ready from jump street to come out with their own finding of facts to refute the accusations.  Yes, I know the "official investigation" is not due to complete for another 6 weeks, but a kid died...I would trust (hope?) that after 2 months of their own investigating, the administration would know whether they had a safety issue with the football program or not and have the facts, or at least the outline of a case, to back up their argument.

- Now, the other side, let's say the article is primarily true.  Then the administration is either covering up the safety issues (in which case the accountability...criminal accountability...goes way higher than a coach or an AD), or they are mismanaging their own investigation and truly don't know the facts.

Neither scenario speaks to any sort of management control over the situation.  The clear panic "firings" of the training staff...and then when there was public outcry on social media the day after, the firing of the coach...leads me to believe that the University of Maryland administration does not have control over this situation - 2 months after a student died.

The difference with the Duke scenario is that the incident and then the reports literally happened overnight (not after 2 months) and the Duke players had to acquire their own legal resources to do the investigation.  That took time and only when the legal team started to uncover the real facts could they make their case to the public.  The MD football program has had the administration doing this investigation for them for 2 months.  If the points in the article are not true, they should at least be able to come out and state that they are not.  The fact that they didn't, says a lot.

Personally, I think the Chancellor....or maybe the Governor...needs to step-in and clean house.  Shut the football program down, fire Evans and Loh, and then hire (beg) someone like Freeman Hrabowski to come in and restore sound management control.

Fire everybody? That seems a little extreme.

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On 8/13/2018 at 11:19 AM, Satyr3206 said:

Fire everybody? That seems a little extreme.

Loh and Evans just admitted:

- The training staff didn’t follow proper procedures for a medical emergency and were responsible for the death.  

- They are launching a second investigation. 

- They found out about the incident primarily through the ESPN reports. 

All this after 2+ months have passed since the incident  

This is mismanagement of the highest order. I don’t think I am being extreme at all. 

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14 minutes ago, JohnBKistler said:

Loh and Evans just admitted:

- The training staff didn’t follow proper procedures for a medical emergency and were responsible for the death.  

- They are launching a second investigation. 

- They found out about the incident primarily through the ESPN reports. 

All this after 2+ months have passed since the incident  

This is mismanagement of the highest order. I don’t think I am being extreme at all. 

Source please?

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On 8/10/2018 at 11:32 PM, TonySoprano said:

Court should be gone, yesterday.  My gut feeling is that McNair's family is going to get a huge payout and the program will be held negligent.  

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These were mistakes on the part of some of the athletic training staff. The University accepts legal and moral responsibility for these mistakes.

There you have it.  My guess is they'll be working on a settlement with the family.  Wallace Loh should face repercussions of his own on this.  Who was minding the store?  Is the buck going to stop at the desk of Kevin Anderson, who is no longer there?

Explain this one.  It appears Loh wants to avoid a lawsuit and is paying off everyone including the coach who may be responsible.

 

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I am a graduate of Maryland and my daughter is presently a student at Maryland.  I was a long time season ticket holder but  there are two things about this story that are mind boggiing and should result in everyone losing their job.

1.  Damon Evan worked in the athletic department since 2014 where his main responsibility was overseeing the football program.  He became the interim athletic director in October when Kevin Anderson went on leave.  Why did Loh promote the person from the athletic department responsible for overseeing football operations to the permanent athletic director one month after McNair collapsed a two weeks after his death?

2.  On August 14th, regarding what occurred on May 29th Maryland is saying " our trainers did not implement appropriately the emergency action plan, misdiagnosed the severity of Jordan’s initial symptoms, did not assess vital signs, and did not promptly and properly treat for exertional heat illness." Why were the trainers and strength and conditioning coach still working with the team until the story came out on ESPN on August 10th?  

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3 hours ago, POR said:

2.  On August 14th, regarding what occurred on May 29th Maryland is saying " our trainers did not implement appropriately the emergency action plan, misdiagnosed the severity of Jordan’s initial symptoms, did not assess vital signs, and did not promptly and properly treat for exertional heat illness." Why were the trainers and strength and conditioning coach still working with the team until the story came out on ESPN on August 10th?  

EXACTLY.  It is total mismanagement.  Incredible when you think that the University had it's own investigation on-going, and it STILL took an outside media report to bring facts to light.  I don't know how Loh get's out of this scott-free.

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On 8/14/2018 at 10:48 PM, JohnBKistler said:

EXACTLY.  It is total mismanagement.  Incredible when you think that the University had it's own investigation on-going, and it STILL took an outside media report to bring facts to light.  I don't know how Loh get's out of this scott-free.

I read that. I'm not really up to date as I have some things going on.When I have time, around Saturday, I'll comment.

I still don't believe any article with anonymous sources.

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