Report: Maryland whistle-blower attacked by teammates

D. J. Durkin was fired as Maryland's coach on Wednesday.Photo: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Maryland AD Damon Evans “We are talking with the players involved and will take appropriate actions based on the facts."

D.J. Durkin was fired as Maryland’s football coach on Wednesday, and on Thursday the Baltimore Sun reported that a Maryland player was attacked by teammates on Tuesday for being a whistle-blower.

Matthew Barber, a junior backup punter, told the Sun that after Tuesday’s practice a teammate tried to punch him in the face.

While the two were fighting, other Terps players arrived to aid the attacker. Barber said he was punched in the face a number of times, resulting in a black eye, a dislocated shoulder and cut on his forehead that required stitches.

“My jersey was bloody,” Barber told the paper.

Barber claimed he was targeted because of his whistle-blower status against Durkin, who observed Maryland’s practice on Tuesday.

Barber also said footballs were thrown at him during the practice and he was taunted.

“We take any matters involving physical altercations extremely seriously,” Maryland AD Damon Evans told the Sun. “We are talking with the players involved and will take appropriate actions based on the facts.”

Durkin was allowed to return as Maryland’s coach on Tuesday because an internal report found that the program’s culture did not meet the standard of “toxic,” which was the word ESPN used to describe the Maryland program.

Durkin was fired the next day.

Also Thursday, James T. Brady, chairman of Maryland’s Board of Regents, is stepping down immediately, he announced in a statement.

On Tuesday, Brady had announced that the board recommended reinstating Durkin as football over the objection of Maryland president Wallace Loh, following investigations into the death of 19-year-old football player Jordan McNair and the culture of the program.

Durkin was reinstated on Tuesday, but the unviersity decided to fire him on Wednesday.

Loh announced that he would retire at the end of the year.

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