On the brink of breaking LaMont Jordan’s freshman school rushing record, Maryland running back Lorenzo Harrison was one of three players suspended from the team indefinitely for violating the university’s student-athlete conduct code, a spokesman said Saturday.
Harrison, who entered Saturday’s game against No. 5 Ohio State 57 yards shy of breaking Jordan’s 19-year-old mark of 689 yards, was suspended along with two other freshmen -- backup linebacker Antoine Brooks and reserve wide receiver DJ Turner.
Harrison and Turner were part of the five-player mini-class from nearby DeMatha.
It marks the first long-term suspension of the season under first-year coach DJ Durkin, who was not available for comment.
Senior running back Wes Brown had entered the season on a three-game ban after being suspended indefinitely last season by then-interim coach Mike Locksley. Redshirt freshman Isaiah Davis was suspended for a game by Durkin for a late hit on Penn State kicker Joey Julius.
It is not clear what the players did to violate the student-athlete conduct code. In the past, Maryland athletes have been suspended for a variety of indiscretions, typically involving academics or off-field behavior. The spokesman wouldn’t clarify what type of violation was committed.
While the loss of Brooks and Turner depletes Maryland’s rotation of special team players, the absence of Harrison is a significant hit to the team’s offense. The 5-foot-8, 193-pound Harrison became the first player in program history to score touchdowns in each of his first four games.
In Maryland’s 28-17 win over Michigan State on Oct. 22, Harrison rushed for a career-high 105 yards on 17 carries and was named the Big Ten’s Freshman of the Week. He rushed for at least 58 yards in eight of the team’s first nine games and came into Saturday averaging 7.2 yards per carry.
Johnson’s 633 yards was two yards behind sophomore Ty Johnson, the team’s leading rusher who was knocked out of last week’s 59-3 loss at Michigan. Harrison had started two of the team’s three games before Saturday. With Harrison out of the rotation, and Johnson expected to play, Brown should get an expanded role.