You know an article with a line like “Even if an athlete dies, it is unusual to put staffers on leave, and so Maryland was not outside the norm for not immediately doing so with Durkin…” isn’t going to be flattering, but, jeez, man, is it really necessary to drag Georgia into it?
Maryland’s athletics director, Damon Evans, is also relatively new in his position — and was a controversial pick. Before he left his job as athletics director at University of Georgia in 2010, he was arrested for drunk driving and told police, “I am not trying to bribe you, but I am the athletic director of the University of Georgia.”
The coaches at Maryland were likely pressured to win because of the institution’s fairly recent entry into the Big Ten, Smith College’s Zimbalist said. While theoretically the Big Ten’s TV contracts would yield Maryland more money, if the football team constantly loses games to powerhouses in the conference such as Ohio State University and the University of Michigan, fans and donors would be turned off, he said.
Creating a credible team would ensure the coaches stayed longer, and eventually likely lead to a better offer from another institution, Zimbalist said.
“Overwhelmingly, there are incentives to win,” he said. “I think that’s what’s going on.”