What happened to Huckleberry Hound and why is he so sad?
From what has to be the University of North Carolina’s version of Jerry Tipton, a North Carolina newspaper recently took a look at the recent scandals at UNC and wondered just how the NCAA could do nothing.
It’s hard to imagine how this kind of thing doesn’t constitute athletes getting special treatment, or “improper benefits,” which is supposed to be an NCAA violation.
These documents show that at least in the cases of those athletes mentioned in them there was a pattern of low standards for courses, that there were too many athletes who were poor students and clearly couldn’t do university-level work, and that advisers were there to keep them eligible.
In the long run, it’s far better for the university to be open with records (not to the point of breaking laws that legitimately protect students’ privacy) and to acknowledge problems.
The article, released yesterday, details some of the unscrupulous things taking place at the university, such as a senior level “reading, writing, and research” course being filled with freshmen who “struggled to read and write on a college level.” I’m no expert, but I think that to be able to read and write, you need to be able to, you know… read and write.
But, according to a report about the incidents:
[W]e see that some of those involving in tutoring or supervising tutors characterized Nyang’oro as being very “reasonable” when it came to athletes, that tutors in some cases provided more “help” than was appropriate, and that for football players who were not good students, the solution to academic difficulty often was a “paper class,” where only a paper was required and there was no class attendance.
We’re familiar with the phenomenon that’s been occurring at North Carolina over the last several weeks, but it’s hard not to get frustrated with the apparent apathy by college sports’ biggest governing body. Exactly what will North Carolina have to do to get in hot water? And don’t assume that the NCAA is too busy dealing with Lance Thomas’s tennis bracelets to pay attention; when they want to get involved, no infraction is too small. Recall how upset they were when Kentucky egregiously celebrated Calipari’s 500th win after beating Florida? They sent UK a letter asking for a public rescinding of the honor, with failure to do so resulting in a mandatory appearance before the infractions committee.
But put a bunch of your players in bogus classes, and basically lie your way to academic eligibility, and everything’s perfectly okay. This is less about wanting UNC to be punished, and more about asking the NCAA to be equally, if ridiculously, unfair to its schools. When even the local newspaper is wondering how the school is getting away with something that seems so suspicious on its face, you have to wonder exactly who believes that nothing wrong happened.
Even Andy Katz took notice of the article this morning and realizes that UNC has some issues:
– Andy Katz (@ESPNAndyKatz) October 2, 2012
Will anything happen as a result? Or will folks at the NCAA continue to ignore the events right under its nose?