Maryland coach DJ Durkin placed on leave by administration as investigation begins

USATSI

Maryland coach DJ Durkin has been placed on immediate administrative leave by the Terrapins following a detailed report alleging a harmful culture around the football program.

"At this time, the best decision for our football program is to place ... Durkin on leave so we can properly review the culture of the program. This is effective immediately," athletic director Damon Evans said in a statement.

Newly hired offfensive coordinator Matt Canada is serving as interim coach at this time.

Evans said he was extremely concerned by the allegations of "unacceptable behaviors" by members of the Maryland football in the ESPN report. He reiterated his support for the full investigation of the program.

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

The allegations in the story include ones of verbal and mental abuse that have contributed to a "toxic" culture at Maryland, which has already been under self-appointed external investigation following the death of offensive lineman Jordan McNair following a workout. McNair, 19, is said to have died of heatstroke after collapsing at a practice and receiving a kidney transplant while in the hospital.

The results of these probes will determine the future for Durkin and two staffers from the strength and conditioning program, who were previously placed on administrative leave.

Urban Meyer, Durkin's former boss at Florida and current Big Ten foe at Ohio State, is also presently on paid administrative leave as part of a university investigation into whether he knew about one of his assistants' past history of alleged domestic abuse.   

CBS Sports Writer

Chip Patterson has spent his young career covering college sports from the Old North State. He's been writing and talking about football and basketball for CBS Sports since 2010. You may have heard him... Full Bio

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