Head coach DJ Durkin tries to rally the Terps from the sideline as Penn State has possession on Maryland’s goal line. (Lila Bromberg/ The Left Bench)

DJ Durkin placed on administrative leave, AD Damon Evans announces

Maryland football head coach DJ Durkin has been placed on administrative leave, effective immediately, athletic director Damon Evans announced Saturday afternoon.

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 decision follows two bombshell reports from ESPN on Friday; the first describing conflicting reports regarding the handling of offensive lineman Jordan McNair’s physical difficulties during the May 29 offseason workout in which he collapsed and was subsequently hospitalized. The second article gave an inside look into what many current and former players and staffers described as a “toxic” culture under Durkin.

On Saturday morning, ESPN reported that multiple members of Maryland’s athletics staff had been placed under administrative leave; these staffers are head football athletic trainer Wes Robinson, director of athletic training Steve Nordwall and strength and conditioning coach Rick Court.

The second ESPN report on Friday depicted multiple cases of alleged abuse and bullying toward Maryland football players from Court.

Offensive coordinator Matt Canada will serve as interim head coach.

The university hired Walters, Inc., a sports medicine consulting group, to conduct an external review. A final report is expected by Sept. 15.