The University of Maryland’s SGA is planning to propose an emergency resolution at its weekly meeting Wednesday night calling for the firing of DJ Durkin, who was reinstated as football coach on Tuesday after more than two months on administrative leave.
Following the Board of Regents’ recommendations Tuesday to have Durkin and athletic director Damon Evans keep their jobs while university President Wallace Loh retires in June, the Student Government Association held an executive meeting Tuesday night to discuss next steps.
The board’s support of Durkin came despite an external investigation that found he shared responsibility for abuse within the football program.
“[T]he decision of the Board of Regents to retain DJ Durkin demonstrates that their priority is on the financial outcomes of [this university’s] football program over the safety and wellbeing of … student-athletes,” the resolution reads.
Noah Eckman, the speaker of the legislature and a junior chemical engineering major, sponsored the measure. It has the support of SGA president Jonathan Allen.
“Today’s announcement was absolutely outrageous,” Allen, a senior government and politics major, said yesterday after the decision was released.
The SGA plans to hold a rally called “Justice for Jordan” on Thursday afternoon. The purpose of the rally is “to affirm student support in the firing of DJ Durkin,” according to the resolution.
The student body’s executive board is “outraged with the decisions” made by the Board of Regents, the Facebook event reads. The group plans to gather in front of McKeldin Library and march down to the university’s administration building.
At a town hall discussion with Evans in September, Allen said that if Durkin were reinstated, it would be “indicative of … instances where athletic departments have valued their bottom line more than they have their student-athletes.”
In addition, the SGA will propose a resolution to “reduce the portion of the Athletics fee regarding student tickets in favor of an opt-in model.”
The $406 yearly athletics fee is mandatory for all students. It funds student tickets, as well as facility renovations and other athletic department initiatives, according to the proposal.
“[A] reduced Athletics fee would empower students to more effectively voice concerns with the Athletics Department,” the resolution reads.
This story will be updated.