Remember that bombshell story that broke about the toxic culture of Maryland Football and in response Maryland suspended Head Coach DJ Durkin, well Maryland has an update on the whole situation and honestly it’s nowhere near good enough.
Tuesday Maryland accepted responsibility in the death of Jordan McNair and Strength and Conditioning Coach Rick Court (the main culprit of the toxic environment) has resigned, but while it’s a step in the the right direction it’s not good enough. And does anyone really believe the line “stepping down to allow the team to heal and move forward” especially when he’s the main culprit of the pain the team suffered? Nope that’s what I thought. But we all knew that Court was gonna be the fall guy, it was clear as day.
The only way to fully ensure that the program is on the right track is to fire HC Durkin because he allowed the toxicity to occur. Not once did he step in and tell Court he was out of line and stand up for this players. Instead he fed into the culture and probably facilitated the whole thing, so if Maryland really cares about their football player’s Durkin is gone.
So let me just take a stab at how this scandal is gonna play out in the coming weeks: Durkin will release a statement saying how sorry he is about McNair’s death and sends the McNair family so much love during this tough time. He’ll say something about how he’s committed to earning the trust of his players and creating and safe and nurturing environment for the program. He’ll throw a line in there about wanting to have a winning program and how he just wants to get back to focusing on football.
Let me also throw it out there that maybe Maryland’s Athletic Director Damon Evans should be called to the carpet because there is absolutely no way that he didn’t have an inkling that something was wrong in the program. I find it hard to believe that not one of the players facing this treatment every day didn’t break down and tell Evans that something was wrong, so Evans should also have to face the music and accept responsibility for his neglect in handling this situation further. Had he stepped in earlier Jordan McNair might not have lost his life that day in June and his family would be left shattered and forever changed.
It’s time for Maryland to put the safety of their student athletes over the desire to win football games by clearing house and starting over to ensure a safe and nurturing program. Because that won’t happen with Durkin at the helm of the program.