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Brennan: Not So Fast on Hairston Being in the Clear


The news from this morning seemed to confirm everything we’ve suspected for weeks.

No, not that Canada got a new future king or that the United Kingdom’s heir apparent is now a grandfather, even though both of those are funny to me, and unfortunate to the parties involved.

Personally, the less I hear about this baby, the better.  Until they teach him to tricks like conquering France or doing backflips or something, there just isn’t anything all that interesting.


The real news story for Kentucky fans is this: P.J. Hairston won’t face any legal trouble for his June arrest.

You read the post, you made your comment, and it’s the same thought I had: Somehow we knew this was coming.  If nothing else, we pride ourselves on getting “picked on.”  And a lot of times (not all the time), we do get picked on.  Especially with Cal as our coach.  But we just knew that, because this was North Carolina, that Hairston would “get away with it,” and for a few hours this morning, it looked like he had.

But Eamonn Brennan is quick to point out that Hairston’s legal issues were the least of UNC’s concerns.  They matter a lot to Hairston himself, sure, but strangely enough, it’s largely irrelevant to the NCAA.  What really matters is the source of the rental car(s) that Hairston had been associated with.

The biggest concern for North Carolina was not the actual legal incident itself, but the connections to Haydn “Fats” Thomas, the aforementioned convicted felon whose name and address popped in Hertz rental receipts obtained by USA Today in July. … [It’s] unclear whether the NCAA is already actively investigating the situation. Given enforcement precedent, it would be shocking if that were not the case.

Charges or no charges, those cars were still rented to Thomas’ address, and that’s what will earn the NCAA’s attention. For an athletics program already mired in three years of football mess and widespread suspicion over its role in academic scandal, the idea of an NCAA investigation into potential improper benefits provided to its star player by a well-known local felon is the real nightmare. That process would be long and arduous and unforgiving, and carries the possibility — however remote — of serious penalties against one of the college game’s marquee programs.

So while Hairston himself seems to be legally off the hook for the alleged infractions, the Tar Heel program isn’t even close to being out of the woods yet.  This shouldn’t incite a witch hunt against UNC (although if it does I have extra pitchforks), but it does put a little bit of temperance on what might be perceived as an outrageous situation.  P.J. might be back for Kentucky, but he’s not back yet.  We’ll see how the NCAA handles his case, independent of the North Carolina judicial system.

Article written by Corey Nichols

14 Comments for Brennan: Not So Fast on Hairston Being in the Clear

  1. lil c
    7:05 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    You’re beating a dead horse here! nothing will come of this, and even if it does, it will only be a 1-2 game suspension. Trust me, ole frankenstein forehead will be back on the court in no time. Now, let’s move on to something else.

  2. KevinM
    7:13 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    I have said since the fraud academic scandal that nothing will come of this, and if UNC wants this kind of player on their program, I’m all for it.
    I like seeing Roy go down with all his best players, no matter how he keeps them eligible.

  3. bmt22033
    7:18 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    When this is all said and done, UNC will get, at most, a very sternly worded letter from the NCAA. But when you don’t have any credibility anyway, who cares when you’re being laughed at, right Mr. Emmert?

  4. ukcatfannfl
    7:21 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    I’m sure the NCAA will declare him ineligible —- in May of next year after he turns pro!!!

  5. JROCK1966
    7:31 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    “But Eamonn Brennan is quick to point out that Hairston’s legal issues were the least of UNC’s concerns. They matter a lot to Hairston himself, sure, but strangely enough, it’s largely irrelevant to the NCAA.”

    If that’s true then why did Jerry Sandusky’s legal issues matter to the NCAA???

  6. brian
    7:34 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    He will payback a small amount of money and will sit some meaningless games at the start of the season. Case closed.

  7. Shut up
    7:38 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    Everybody knows Terrence Jones was drunk when he crashed his car and his buddy from his hometown took the rap. Still unanswered is how his buddy got all the way to UK from Washington without a little “help”. Cal is just as dirty but is better at covering it up. Quit whining.

  8. Han
    7:44 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    UNC will skate the same way they did with the academic scandal. And before you list the penalties from that, remember that the basketball program got off completely and the penalties only recognized a couple years of misbehavior, blaming it all on a handful of people who took their payoffs to leave quietly. They never even looked to see if the years Peppers was on the basketball and football team were tainted. And there’s still emails and stuff coming out showing they were purposefully covering things up back then.

    UNC, like Duke, will continue to escape penalties they deserve.

  9. TorpedoVegas
    7:45 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    7) How would anyone ever be able to get from Washington to Kentucky? What with all the cholera and indians roaming around I’m surprised the fella even made it past Texas. I need this answered immediately!

  10. You're funny.....
    7:46 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    #7 so says the POS Smell troll living in a glass house!

  11. Dr. Wildcat
    8:01 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    7. The difference between Terrence Jones and PJ is that PJ’s crimes occurred in the real world, whereas TJ’s only happened in your little fantasy world that you’ve dreamed up to cope with UK being successful. In the real world, TJ was hit by a drunk driver who crossed over the center while TJ was in a car owned and driven by a friend, and no one in the car had been drinking that night. Read the police report if you want. Or keep reading UofL message boards. We all know that’s where the REAL facts are…

  12. backpack
    8:02 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    As black and white as this seems, the NCAA will paint this in shades of gray. Nothing will happen to UNC.

  13. NCAA
    10:12 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    If anyone on here thinks for one second we would punish UNC and take any chances of us losing money, then continue to live in your own little world.
    Come on now, lets all be serious and think here for a second. If we continue to get rich and fat by raking in all this money from the student/athlete or “free labor” as we like to put it, then why would we risk that money generating machine by punishing one of our top schools?
    We have to continue to rake it in because we will have a VERY large payment to make once we settle being sued by O’Bannon and company.

  14. LA
    10:41 am July 23, 2013 Permalink

    The NCAA will give carolyin a pass on this like they did the academic scandal. wait and see….