Maryland’s decision to fire DJ Durkin one day after he was reinstated as head coach of the football team came from the College Park campus against the recommendation of the board of regents, according to Rick Maese of the Washington Post.
The University of Maryland informed the board of regents of its decision but did NOT consult with the board. We'll soon find out how angry the board is that Loh has defied their recommendation and whether they feel need to take further action
— Rick Maese (@RickMaese) October 31, 2018
From the moment the news broke on Tuesday the board of regents recommended Durkin be brought back from administrative leave, backlash swirled for their decision. Three starting players reportedly walked out a meeting with Durkin ahead of the announcement. Offensive lineman Ellis McKenzie chastised the school for accepting Durkin back and not holding him accountable for the death of his friend Jordan McNair.
Maryland governor Larry Hogan also criticized the decision to bring back Durkin, urging the board of regent to reconsider.
Maryland president Wallace Loh had previously urged the board of regents to move on from Durkin but according to a separate report by Maese, he was essentially given “no option” but to adhere to the board of regents.
Loh may have also jeopardized his immediate future within the university as he answers to the board of regents that governs the 12-institution system. He originally decided to resign from his position in June in wake of the controversy. He was put in a unique situation, as the board of regents has no authority over the hiring and firing of the football coach.
However after meeting with reinstated athletic director Damon Evans and other school officials, Loh had an about-face, as he called the removal of Durkin was “in the best interest of the University” in a statement.
Durkin was informed by Evans of his termination after Wednesday’s practice, per Maese.
Durkin’s departure will be a costly move for Maryland, who will buy out his contract for $5.1 million because he was not fired for just cause, per James Crabtree-Hannigan of the Diamondback
Matt Canada will be the interim coach, a position he has held since Durkin was initially placed on administrative leave on Aug. 11.