UNC athletics investigations
by Rachel George, USA TODAY Sports
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has faced athletic- and academic-related investigations for more than two years, the results of which include NCAA sanctions, the resignation of Chancellor Holden Thorp and yet-to-be-seen consequences of four ongoing investigations. A look at the problems plaguing a school dubbed one of the Public Ivies:
An investigation started in the summer of 2010 found three major violations within the football program starting in the 2008-09 academic year.
• Jennifer Wiley, a former tutor, committed academic fraud in writing parts of papers and doing other coursework for former players. She additionally provided improper benefits to players, including paying $1,789 in parking tickets for one player.
• Seven players received more than $27,000 in impermissible benefits, which included trips with runners, who work as middlemen for agents.
• Former assistant coach John Blake’s relationship with Gary Wichard and the money Blake accepted from the agent constituted unethical conduct, according to the NCAA. The investigation found that Blake had worked or was compensated by Wichard’s agency, with Blake accepting $31,000 from it between 2007 and 2009. The Committee on Infractions concluded that Blake used his role as a UNC coach to steer players to Wichard.
The NCAA announced sanctions in March that will affect the program in the coming seasons. Included with UNC’s self-imposed penalties, the Tar Heels received three years of NCAA probation, a reduction of 15 scholarships over a three-year period and a postseason ban for 2012.
Also as a result, former coach Butch Davis was fired nine days before the start of training camp in 2011. A day later, athletic director Dick Baddour announced his resignation. He served the remainder of his contract through June 2012, ending 15 years in that position and more than 40 years at the school. Seven players were ineligible for the 2010 season and dismissed from the team while a total of 14 missed at least one game that year.
A lawsuit filed by former player Michael McAdoo to get his eligibility reinstated revealed a paper for a class in the Department of African and Afro-American (AFAM) … [For more on University of North Carolina athletics investigations, click here.]