University of North Carolina Coaches and Players Have Avoided Blame in Recent Academic Investigation

Brendan Maloney – USA TODAY Sports

The month long investigation into North Carolina academics has proved that coaches and players are not to be blamed for academic fraud. North Carolina Governor Jim Martin led the investigation and found that the school’s African and Afro-American Studies Department was the source of the wrongdoing.

This is the only department found to have contributed to the academic fraud, which led to the exiting of football coach Butch Davis.

A key segment from Martin’s report is as follows:

Based on our work, we conclude that this matter was truly academic in nature and not an athletic scandal as originally speculated, and that the identified academic misconduct and anomalies were isolated to the Department of African and African-American Studies. We appreciate the cooperation and unrestricted access by the University afforded to the review team in the conduct of this project.

What was originally thought to have been a two-year academic and athletic fraud actually turned out to be a problem in the African Studies program since 1997. The university employees found responsible; African Studies chairman Julius Nyang’oro, and department administrator Deborah Crowder; have since retired.

Gov. Martin has pardoned athletic coaches from the responsibility of their players’ classroom behavior. Martin’s view is that the players’ tendencies to commit academic fraud should be observed as a student’s action and not that of an athlete.

The NCAA has prevented 10 teams from playing in the 2013 post season due to faulty academics. Luckily for ACC and UNC fans alike, the Tar Heels have dodged that bullet.

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