USM Board of Regents to Create Independent Monitor to Oversee Athletics Reforms at UMCP
Board Chair Says “University Bears Responsibility”
Baltimore, Md. (Oct. 30, 2018) -- University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents Chair James T. Brady today reiterated that the board has accepted all the findings and recommendations from the independent commission established to review the football culture at the University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP).
To guarantee quick implementation of the reforms necessary to safeguard the well-being of current and future student-athletes, and to ensure that future dysfunction outlined in the commission report is prevented, the board will appoint an independent monitoring group. The composition of that group will be announced in the coming weeks.
“Since the tragic death of Jordan McNair on June 13 and the subsequent allegations regarding the football program, the Board of Regents has sought to uncover every discernable fact to better understand what happened and to make whatever decisions are necessary to ensure that it never happens again,” Chair Brady said. “We owe that to Jordan McNair, to his family and friends, to his teammates and to every student-athlete at the university and at universities across the system.”
The monitoring group to be appointed by the board will play a key role.
“To ensure that this happens, the Board of Regents will establish an independent monitoring group to oversee the implementation of these policies and procedures,” Brady said. “The independent monitoring group…will report to the full Board of Regents. Working with the chancellor, the independent monitor will be provided full and unhindered access to the university’s athletic department, including its personnel, facilities, practices and games.”
“After taking the time necessary to gather and thoroughly review the facts, and based on what we know today, the Board of Regents believes that the university bears responsibility for what happened to Mr. McNair, and will live up to its responsibility,” Brady said. “In the coming weeks, I expect the Office of the Attorney General will conclude its legal review and advise the university and system as to next steps.”
The board also recommended to university leaders the retention of Athletic Director Damon Evans and Head Coach D.J. Durkin. They, along with UMCP President Wallace Loh, are charged with implementing the reforms under the guidance of the independent monitoring group.
“We are not saying people didn’t make mistakes. They each made mistakes and have acknowledged those shortcomings,” Brady said. “We are saying that, despite those mistakes, our judgment is that these individuals are best-placed to immediately carry out the reforms necessary to safeguard the wellbeing of student-athletes and help them be successful as individuals and as a team.”
“For the next several years, the football program in particular – and the athletics department in general – will be closely scrutinized both by the independent monitoring group and by the Board of Regents and by the broader public,” Brady said. “We will expect everyone involved to perform in a manner that is totally consistent with the values of the University of Maryland, College Park. There will be no third chance for any of those involved to get this right.”
Going forward, Brady emphasized the need to work together to live up to the university’s values.
“In the months and years to come, accomplishing this goal—and thereby modeling our values as a university system and as Marylanders—will take the concerted efforts of everyone involved, including university leaders and the Board of Regents. We will forever be guided by the memory of Jordan McNair.”
About the University System of Maryland (USM)
The University System of Maryland is the state’s public higher education system, with 12 institutions and two regional higher education centers.
About the USM Board of Regents
A 17-member Board of Regents, including one full-time student, governs the University System of Maryland. Appointed by the governor, the regents oversee the system's academic, administrative, and financial operations; formulate policy; and appoint the USM chancellor and the presidents of the system's 12 institutions. With the exception of the student member, each regent is appointed for a term of five years, and may not serve more than two consecutive full terms. The student regent is appointed for a one-year term and may be reappointed. Regents serve on the board without compensation.
Contact: Mike Lurie