Univ of Maryland found culpable in death of player

Submitted by Shop Smart Sho… on September 21st, 2018 at 5:58 PM


Time to see if the NCAA and/or Big Ten has any moral standing. If they're ever going to give a program the death penalty again, now would seem like the time to do it.


East German Judge

September 21st, 2018 at 6:01 PM ^

Neither organization has a moral compass. Sad. If any school deserved the death penalty it was ped state, but that didn't happen so don't hold your breath.

BTW, FUCK ped state and all their delusional joepa loving fans!!!


September 21st, 2018 at 7:19 PM ^

I don't think it's a question of the severity of the punishment but rather how broadly you want to apply it.

It depends on if the death was the result of a single person's bad decision or program wide issues. I think the S&C staff definitely is to blame for A) working this kid to this condition, and B) not responding correctly when he collapsed. It's more and more circumstantial as you get farther from that. 

Durkin getting canned and hit with a show-cause for creating a culture the contributed to that would be fitting, but death penaltying a program seems like the punishment is inflicted too widely. 


September 22nd, 2018 at 3:00 AM ^

Shop Smart - try using your brain.   You think the program INTENTIONALLY killed him?   How about waiting to hear the full results of a complete investigation to determine the uh, LEVEL of culpability.   You’re aware there are levels, right?   Or you’d rather skip all that and jump right to the hanging?   Wow.


September 21st, 2018 at 6:18 PM ^

Normally I think the death penalty isn't a reasonable response, but here the university is responsible for the death of a student-athlete. They've shown themselves incapable of being in charge of the well-being of football players. Why should Maryland be given a second chance?

Mr Miggle

September 21st, 2018 at 9:44 PM ^

Serious question, what should have happened to Michigan for the Shane Morris incident? No one died, but they showed they were incapable in that instance of being in charge of the well being of their players. It was luck that it didn't turn out much worse.

People lost their jobs, procedures were changed, responsibility was taken. The same thing is happening at Maryland.


September 21st, 2018 at 6:21 PM ^

too severe agreed.  should we also shut down the athletics department for these schools:








September 21st, 2018 at 6:50 PM ^

Let's go by school:

Garden City CC - Player died in his dorm after workouts, medical personnel were called as soon as possible. Not the same situation.

Maine - Player died on the field, medical personnel were called as soon as possible. Not the same situation.

Northwestern - Player died on the field, medical personnel were called as soon as someone noticed there was a problem. Not the same situation.

Cal - Player died on the field, medical assistance wasn't provided, and the university accepted liability. Similar situation, and I would be fine if Cal's team was given a death penalty.

Rice - Player died after practice due to an undiagnosed disease, and medical personnel were called as soon as possible. Not the same situation.

Maryland - Player died in the hospital after showing signs of heat stroke for over an hour before anyone thought to call an ambulance. He wasn't even taken off the field for 34 minutes from when his symptoms first showed up. That's straight up gross negligence towards the safety of a student-athlete.

Look, I don't care if your school pays recruits. I don't care if your coach has consensual relationships with cheerleaders or administrative assistants. But I do care if you can't take medical issues with your players seriously. If you hire a coaching staff who won't take the health and well-being of student-athletes seriously, you don't deserve to have a team.


September 21st, 2018 at 7:57 PM ^

Northwestern’s Rashidi Wheeler had a heart defect. The risks were known and he chose to play football. That is very different than coaches dragging kids around the field and behaving without regard for human life. 

Lastly, if memory serves, Rashidi died at a captains practice while trainers (the guys with ice and wraps not S&C coaches) were present but no coaches. 


September 21st, 2018 at 8:19 PM ^

The athletic trainers (people with ice and wraps) are on the medical side with regards to player health/safety and performance. Strength and conditioning is responsible for performance, and while they do have some training/responsibility with regards to what they are required to do, the *medical* training is limited to having a CPR certification. Source: am one, and worked closely with others in NCAA athletics. I'd say that assuming the actual substance of a workout was not negligent or dangerous, the trainers (ATC) carry more responsibility regarding player safety and health.


September 21st, 2018 at 8:35 PM ^


perhaps your goal is the same as mine. I said “ice and wraps not S&C” so that people clearly knew what I meant when I said “trainer”. As a former NU athlete myself who redshirted due to injury I’m personally very familiar with the difference between a trainer and a strength coach but often people assume I mean strength coach when I say trainer. In this case there is a big difference between Rick Court dragging Jordan at Maryland and a trainer properly following protocol at NU. 


September 21st, 2018 at 6:24 PM ^

Disagree, agree, and agree.

A guy collapses, and the official university response is "dragging him across the field and letting him die...is ok."

The system didn't break down, there was no misunderstanding or confusion of responsibility. The adults in charge acted deliberately and according to their character. Fuck them all.

Goggles Paisano

September 21st, 2018 at 6:34 PM ^

He was done.  It just had to play out so that he can legally be done for cause.  The whole situation is very unfortunate because of a couple big time dickheaded coaches that went WAY over the line of trying to create tough football players.  I feel so bad for the parents.  As a father of three, I can't even imagine...




September 21st, 2018 at 6:56 PM ^

Culpable does not mean legally responsible, so says the lawyer-wife sitting next to me. And the article never uses that word. Pretty much the only thing it said was "trainers on the scene did not follow proper procedures after he collapsed on the field." And we already knew that. To me, this looks like a classic case of a copy editor providing a title that doesn't quite match the article.


September 21st, 2018 at 7:31 PM ^

The President of the University of Maryland said this:

“They entrusted their son to us, and he did not return home,” Loh said of McNair’s parents. “The University accepts legal and moral responsibility for the mistakes that were made on that fateful day. ... They misdiagnosed the situation.”

Maybe I'm misunderstanding your comment?


September 21st, 2018 at 9:54 PM ^

Terrible situation but this response makes me want to forgive them. Crap happens and it’s terrible, but judging by the list of numerous schools where similar things happened it’s not like this is unique.  But to so frankly own up to the error shows they have remorse and some character.

Contrast this to MSU who denied, deflected, delayed, got political, refused to do an actual independent investigation and basically refused to admit any fault. Or OSU who was totally fine with an employee destroying evidence while under investigation.  Where legal liability or football wins were more important than showing some character.  

Out of the 3 schools, I view Maryland most favorably because when this is all done, I believe they will make a legitimate attempt to remove the true problem from the organization.


September 21st, 2018 at 11:22 PM ^

Yes, that would be 'culpable' by admitting fault. You are right, I missed that.

Although, I'd like to point out that there is nothing in this article that is new. Per an August 14th article from ESPN, the exact same quote can be found.

On Aug. 14, after ESPN reported McNair was admitted to a local hospital with a temperature of 106 degrees, Loh revealed preliminary findings from the Walters Inc. report and said, "the university accepts legal and moral responsibility for the mistakes that our training staff made."



September 21st, 2018 at 7:49 PM ^

Not only was ND never punished for its culpability in that scissor-lift/film guy's death, but Brian Kelly even kept his job.

Durkin is on shaky ground, but this will go no further (and maaay not even lead to his firing). 


September 22nd, 2018 at 1:02 AM ^

Hearing this news from Maryland immediately made me think about the Notre Dame situation. I am a physician and, although Maryland should have clearly done a better job by taking steps to minimize the risks to its players, the body and its response to stressors, is an inexact science.  Really crappy, inexplicable things happen every single day in the medical world.  In most of these situations, there is very little that could’ve been done to anticipate or prevent a bad outcome from occurring.

In contrast, the Notre Dame situation, as I understand it, was completely preventable. The coaches decided, for some reason, that obtaining further film of their practice was more important for the safety of the student on the lift.

 I don’t know how Notre Dame got a pass on that situation. 


September 21st, 2018 at 7:52 PM ^

Look, I know a kid died, but if child rape (PSU), teen rape (MSU) and wife beating (OSU) of multiple victims doesn’t move the moral compass, why should one kid’s death?