The editorial board of the Diamondback, the University of Maryland’s independent student newspaper, has published a column calling for the firing of university president Wallace Loh, athletic director Damon Evans and suspended football coach DJ Durkin.
The story was in response to an independent commission’s investigation into allegations of a “toxic” culture within the football program on Durkin’s watch.
The findings, released to the public by the Washington Post last week, stopped short of calling the culture “toxic” but outlined many problems within the structure of the program that led to players feeling unsafe.
“The report implicated not just coach DJ Durkin, but also athletic directors Kevin Anderson and Damon Evans and university President Wallace Loh of enabling a noxious environment within the athletic department,” the editorial reads. “Despite the commissioners’ best attempts to minimize these officials’ misconduct, this editorial board takes from the report an obvious conclusion: Durkin, Evans and Loh must go.”
The editorial board wrote that the commission’s “watered-down recommendations” do not go far enough in correcting the problems around the football team and punishing those involved.
“A total system failure requires a complete overhaul,” the editorial reads. “So long as Durkin, Evans and Loh remain in their positions, this university cannot repair this profound and well-deserved injury to its reputation.”
The University System of Maryland Board of Regents met four times between Oct. 19 and Oct. 26 to discuss the commission’s report. The regents are expected to announce their decisions and possible punitive actions this week.