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Why Maryland ‘parted ways’ with football strength & conditioning coach Rick Court

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AD Damon Evans announced the news on Tuesday.

Maryland v Florida International
Rick Court
Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images

The University of Maryland and football strength and conditioning coach Rick Court have parted ways.

Athletic director Damon Evans announced the news Tuesday. Court said in a note posted on Twitter that he submitted his resignation on Monday.

Court, head football athletic trainer Wes Robinson and director of athletic training Steve Nordwall were reportedly placed on leave following an ESPN report detailing events leading to the death of Jordan McNair and alleged mistreatment of the team’s players. Evans initially said during his Tuesday press conference that the school had parted ways with one staff member, and when pressed further revealed the staffer to be Court.

Yahoo Sports’ Pete Thamel reported Tuesday that Court reached a financial settlement with the school.

Court was one of DJ Durkin’s first hires after Durkin was named Maryland head coach in December 2015. He was a centerpiece of ESPN’s report detailing a “toxic culture” within the football program. A former staffer said in the report that Court “would use any language he deemed appropriate to get a response or move your needle.”

From the ESPN report:

“He’s just a ball of testosterone all the time,” one current player said. “He’s really in your face. He’ll call you [expletives], he’ll challenge you in the weight room. He’ll put more weight on the bar than you can do, ever done in your life, and expect you to do it multiple times. He’ll single people out he doesn’t like, which is a common practice here. Guys are run off. They’ll have them do specific finishes at the end and do harder workouts or more workouts just to make their lives miserable here. He’s kind of Durkin’s tool to accomplish that. He’s the guy people hate, and that way Durkin doesn’t have to take the blow for it. Guys can’t stand Coach Court.”

Court was in charge of the team’s organized workout on May 29, during which McNair collapsed.

Robinson and Nordwall are still on administrative leave. Durkin was placed on administrative leave Saturday.