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D.J. Durkin to remain as Maryland football coach; university makes no major immediate changes

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D.J. Durkin to remain as Maryland football coach; university makes no major immediate changes

The University of Maryland's Board of Regents is not making any major administrative changes to its athletic program in the wake of Jordan McNair's death, the university announced on Tuesday.

University president Wallace Loh, athletic director Damon Evans and head football coach D.J. Durkin will remain at the university. Loh is set to retire in June. 

Furthermore, Durkin is reportedly expected to return to the sidelines for the Terrapins when they host Michigan State on Saturday, Nov. 3 at Noon.

The decision comes as a result of the university's findings and a public report into the culture of the Terrapins football program following the June 13 death of the sophomore offensive tackle.

McNair's died as the result of a heat stroke that occurred during a May 29 workout. Collapsing on the field due to exhaustion, the 19-year-old suffered a seizure and the authorities were not contacted for nearly an hour. He appeared in just one game during his freshman season with the Terps following a standout high school career at The McDonough School. McNair chose Maryland over the likes of Ohio State, Auburn, Penn State and Rutgers.

On Aug. 11, the university accepted the forced resignation from Terrapins strength and conditioning coach Rick Court, and formally placed Durkin on administrative leave. Offensive coordinator Matt Canada was named interim head coach and has since guided the Terps to a 5-3 record through the first nine weeks of the 2018 season.

"I am profoundly disturbed by the media reports yesterday about verbally abusive and intimidating conduct by Maryland football coaches and staff towards our student-athletes on the team.," Loh said at the time of the university's decision to place Durkin on administrative leave.

Loh, according to a Washington Post report, was against the idea of retaining Durkin as the Terrapins' head coach. 

"It was made clear that if he [Loh] want to remain in his position, he had no option," a source told The Post. "He ultimately felt it would've been tremendously disruptive to the entire campus if he was to be terminated simply because he wouldn't put the coach back on the field ..."

Durkin was hired by the university on Dec. 2, 2015 following his lone season as defensive coordinator for the Michigan Wolverines.

The Terrapins are 10-15 in games with Durkin as head coach.

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Report: Top quarterback recruit Caleb Williams gave Maryland last word before college decision

Report: Top quarterback recruit Caleb Williams gave Maryland last word before college decision

On Saturday night, the No. 1 quarterback prospect of the 2021 recruiting class will announce his decision on where he will spend his college career. And he may not even have to leave the DMV to do it.

Gonzaga’s junior signal caller Caleb Williams has narrowed his list of options down to three schools: Oklahoma, LSU and Maryland. Though the Sooners under quarterback guru Lincoln Riley are considered the favorites to land him, the hometown Terrapins have outlasted a plethora of other schools throughout Williams’ decision-making process. According to The Washington Post, he gave head coach Michael Locksley and the Terps final word, last speaking with Maryland coaches on June 27.

Ranked the fourth overall player in his class by 247sports, Williams is coming off back-to-back seasons in which he was named first-team All-Met. As a junior in 2019, he threw for 1,770 yards and 19 touchdowns while showcasing his dual-threat ability by rushing for 838 yards and another 18 scores.

Locksley and the Terps have already enjoyed a successful offseason of recruiting highlighted by landing 247sports’ fourth-ranked wide receiver in the 2020 class, Rakim Jarrett. A product of St. John’s in D.C., he flipped from LSU on signing day, surprising even Locksley.

RELATED: HOW STEFON DIGGS CONVINCED RAKIM JARRETT TO PICK MARYLAND OVER LSU

Though the Terps went just 3-9 (1-8 in Big Ten play) last season, the addition of Jarrett as a legitimate weapon in the passing game may be enough to convince Williams to forego Oklahoma and LSU. He plans to announce his decision Saturday at 9 p.m.

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Top 2022 prospect Emoni Bates commits to Michigan State

Top 2022 prospect Emoni Bates commits to Michigan State

The No. 1 prospect basketball in the class of 2022 Emoni Bates announced his commitment to Michigan State on Monday. 

The five-star small forward is considered the best high school prospect in more than a decade and will be taking his talents to the Big Ten.

Bates had offers from four other schools: DePaul, Florida State, Kentucky and Michigan. The Michigan native announced his commitment extremely early in the recruiting process –– so early that the top eight recruits in the 2021 class have not even announced their decisions yet.

The 6-foot-9, 205-pound forward became the first commit of Michigan State’s class. He is also the first five-star to become a Spartan since Jaren Jackson Jr. in 2017 and the first No. 1 prospect to sign with the school since ESPN began its recruiting database in 2007.

His commitment came at a crucial time for the Spartans who lost significant talent at the end of last season in 2019 Big Ten Player of the Year Cassius Winston, who graduated, and 2020 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year Xavier Tillman Sr., who declared for the NBA Draft after his junior season.

Maryland will now have to face Bates at least twice a year in Big Ten play. The Terps have two commits in their class of 2021 – four stars Julian Reese and Ike Cornish – but have yet to add a member to the class of 2022. 

Last season, Maryland and Michigan State each won one matchup against the other. The two teams tied alongside Wisconsin as co-Big Ten Champions. All three teams posted a 14-6 conference record before the Big Ten and NCAA tournaments were cut short or canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

In the final AP Poll, Michigan State finished ninth while Maryland finished 12th.

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