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More Reactions To The NCAA’s UNC Decision

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Long Beach State v North Carolina
CHAPEL HILL, NC - NOVEMBER 15: Head coach Roy Williams of the North Carolina Tar Heels shutting out the criticisms of how his university handled its long-running NCAA investigation.
Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

As the NCAA decision on UNC’s massive academic fraud settle in, reactions are coming in too.

The N&O’s Abby Bennett has a nice compilation of some of the responses, including comments from James Warren of the Poynter Institute who praises the N&O’s Dan Kane and slams the NCAA. He quotes Kane’s lede on the decision: "UNC-Chapel Hill escaped NCAA sanctions, in what was one of the longest-running academic scandals in college sports history, in large part by refusing to identify as fraudulent 16 years of classes that had no instruction and were graded by a secretary."

There’s a lot more but Kane has by far done the best work on this ugly mess so he deserves the spotlight. But read all the links. It’s worth it, but you might feel like taking a bath afterwards.

And when you do, you’ll need a nice clean shirt, and coincidentally, we know where you can find a pretty swell one.

Georgia folk are wondering how UNC pulled it off when they paid a heavy price for their own shenanigans, but in fairness, the Georgia coaching staff was directly involved in the academic fraud with Jim Harrick, Jr. actually teaching a bogus class in basketball (sample question: how many points is a three point shot worth? Seriously).

Minnesota has a bone to pick too.

And here’s a reaction from the Duke Chronicle which is pretty solid.

In general, and it’s sad to say this, the grownups in Chapel Hill during the scandal have mostly worked for the Daily Tar Heel, UNC’s student paper.

So while there’s a lot to like in this column by Alexander Peeples, unfortunately he misses a couple of key points, particularly about social justice:

“A public university with a student and faculty population much whiter than the state that will not take down a Jim Crow-era monument to the Confederacy. A scandal-rocked basketball program that got off because it had good lawyers and did not commit the ultimate sin of actually paying revenue generating athletes.”

However else you define it, UNC’s disgraceful exploitation of athletes, many of whom are African-American, is the antithesis of social justice and betrays the university’s long commitment to fighting racism. You can pay them or not, but bringing young people to campus with poor educations is one thing. Making millions off of their backs and letting them leave without an education is quite another.

Silent Sam will come down eventually (and the Tar Heel nickname, which is also associated with the Civil War, should go too), but what about the banners in the Dean Dome which are there because the university was willing to - let’s be honest - cheat mostly African-American players out of an education in order to hang them? Where is the shame? The urge for justice? Why have so few in Chapel Hill been angered by the exploitation many of those banners represent?

Peeples sees UNC as “[a] home for southern progressivism where the front line forms against racism, censorship and poverty.”

Fine, but that front line is on campus, Alex, where an appallingly casual racism used and tossed aside a generation of athletes.

And now it’s your legacy too.

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