The NCAA has returned to the scene where the off-seasons’s highest profile investigation initiated. An investigation related to college football players’ conduct with sports agents that has spanned from North Carolina to Florida and Alabama and touched South Carolina and Georgia has returned to North Carolina to gather more information.
North Carolina defensive tackle Marvin Austin and wide receiver Greg Little are the players that were at the crux of the investigation by the NCAA for reported violations involving sports agents. Questions about travel and hotel expenses to a party in Miami. Both players are expected to practice with the team on Friday when Butch Davis’ team opens practice. ACC associate commissioner Shane Lyons confirms there is no NCAA rule stating that a player under investigation may not practice with his team according to The Charlotte Observer.
North Carolina athletic director Dick Baddour confirmed the NCAA returned to Chapel Hill yesterday but would not comment on the details of the investigation. “We are all working as hard as we can to resolve this issue as quickly as we can,” Baddour said. A team spokesman told reporters though that two players were interviewed by the NCAA, but would not mention the names of the players.
Baddour also confirmed that the university is fully cooperating in the joint investigation with the NCAA. “Their initial call to us was that we will conduct this review together, and that’s what we’re doing.”
The status of Little and Austin for the 2010 season remains unknown despite the fact each will join in team practices this season. The Herald Sun takes a look at Austin’s status and how the defensive line may have to adjust should he be ruled ineligible for any amount of time;
The real dilemma for the UNC coaching staff will come if no ruling has been made by the first game and then they will have to decide if they risk playing a potentially ineligible player.
But even if Austin ends up missing just a few games it will still be a blow to UNC’s defense as Austin finished with 42 tackles, six tackles for loss and four sacks last year.
– The Herald-Sun, August 5, 2010
Losing Austin would be a serious blow even if just for one game to start the season against LSU. The investigation continues to be on-going and no player has been suspended at this time.