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Maryland’s Board of Regents announces another closed meeting set for Thursday

Two meetings down. (At least) one more to go.

maryland football-2018-preview-depth-chart-roster-defensive-tackle Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Maryland football players, coaches, fans and stakeholders of all sorts have been waiting as the University System of Maryland Board of Regents conducted its investigation into the team. That investigation is finally finished after two months, and public results are on their way—but not yet.

The Board of Regents met on Friday, Oct. 19, and heard the results of the investigation into the football program. That meeting was on the books before the investigation was even announced. The Board met again on Tuesday to further discuss the investigation findings “and begin the process of making any decisions necessary to safeguard the wellbeing of student-athletes at UMCP and at public universities across Maryland.”

But the only public announcement from that meeting was that there will be a Thursday meeting. Beyond that, we just don’t know much.

The Board is expected to release findings publicly “within one week” of Tuesday’s meeting. From its statement last week:

“Within one week following the October 23 special session, the USM expects to publicly share findings from the independent commission investigation and to announce any initial decisions and/or recommendations from the board.”

One week from Oct. 23 is Oct. 30, so Halloween is the Board’s self-imposed deadline for telling the public whether DJ Durkin or anyone else will be dismissed.

However, phrases like “expects to” and “initial decisions and/or recommendations” leave the door open for this to drag beyond that date. What the Board “expects” is not necessarily what will happen. And it’s possible that the initial decisions or recommendations the Board announces are not final moves.

And once the Board does announce its decisions or findings, that’ll set off a big chain of events. All reports indicate that Durkin does not intend to take a firing decision lying down. If Maryland wants to fire him for cause, that might mean a legal fight. That also applies for anyone else whose job is potentially at stake here. When the Board finally announces its decision, that probably won’t wrap things up in a nice bow. But it’ll be an important next step.