In the six months that D.J. Durkin has been running the show in College Park, there’s been one word that repeatedly comes up when talking about his coaching philosophy.


Durkin wants everything the Terps do to be done with a sense of urgency. He calls it a habit or a way of life. If that can become the norm, he feels confident that Maryland won’t be sitting in the B1G basement for long.

Durkin addressed the crowd at the National Zoo in Washington D.C. as part of the Maryland Pride Tour. What he said to Maryland fans preached urgency.

“Someone’s got to give me a reason because I haven’t found one and I’ve looked hard: What is a reason that Maryland, we can’t be on top of that best competition on top of the Big Ten?” Durkin said while those in attendance applauded. “There’s no reason.”

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On the surface, that might sound a bit optimistic coming from a first-year coach who is up against Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State in his own division. Durkin, of course, was most recently the defensive coordinator at Michigan and he grew up in Youngstown, Ohio. He knows that Michigan and Ohio State — which still fell short to Michigan State — are the standard that B1G programs are measured up against.

But Durkin does have a point. Why can’t a program like Maryland become a 21st century power like a Michigan State or a TCU? After all, the Terps were have one of the top recruiting hotbeds in the country in their backyard, which Durkin is already cleaning up in.

The support from Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank is only going to increase as the Terps continue to rebrand themselves and upgrade their facilities. Having that kind of backing will give Maryland an advantage that few teams in the country have.

And it’s not like Maryland is dealing with some NCAA violation.

Does that mean Maryland will flip the script overnight? That’s not likely. Spending another year or two trailing the B1G East powers seems inevitable until Durkin can get his recruits into the mix.

But as Durkin said, is there a reason that Maryland can’t eventually establish itself as a yearly division contender?