Maryland admitted legal and moral responsibility for the death of Terrapins offensive lineman Jordan McNair, but McNair’s parents want the university board of regents to hold coach D.J. Durkin accountable.
McNair died in June from heatstroke after falling ill during practice on May 29. Investigators ruled McNair showed clear signs of extreme exhaustion and could not stand upright. It was an hour later before 911 was called, even after McNair had a seizure, according to records released by ESPN.
“He shouldn’t be able to work with anybody else’s kid,” Martin McNair told ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Thursday. “You send your kid away to college for them to be developed into young people — and that’s physically, emotionally and spiritually. And teach our young kids, our young people that we worked so hard to get there, to, ‘Hey, I’m giving my child to you. Keep him safe. They did anything but that. So of course he should be fired.”
During a press conference on Tuesday, president Wallace D. Loh said the school accepts responsibility for McNair’s death.
Head athletic trainer Wes Robinson yelled, “Drag his ass across the field,” during McNair’s struggle to maintain balance, according to ESPN’s report into the mistreatment of players. Robinson and director of athletic training Steve Nordwell are on administrative leave, as is Durkin. Strength and conditioning coach Rick Court has resigned, the school announced Tuesday.
Durkin’s fate could be decided Friday when the board of regents is scheduled to hold a closed-door meeting.
McNair’s mother, Tonya Wilson, told ABC on Thursday that her son never would have stopped a workout unless he was physically unable to continue.
“Jordan was the type of person who would give his all, give his best, because someone asked him to do something,” Wilson said. “He would always give his all. He wouldn’t have stopped. He wouldn’t have stopped. If that’s the culture, he didn’t want to be called any names, things that they say they’ve been called.”
–Field Level Media