At the bottom of page 1 and top of page 2 the document lists the NCAA rules on academic fraud discussed in VAWolf82’s entry. But the interesting thing in the Michigan St document is the paragraph that follows the NCAA rules:
Student-athletes found in violation of ethical conduct legislation involving academic fraud will be declared immediately ineligible for intercollegiate competition until their eligibility is reinstated. A student-athlete who is involved in academic fraud will be withheld from one season of competition and will be charged with a season of competition.
If I’m reading that right, if you’re a student athlete at Michigan State and you get caught cheating not only are you done for the year but you don’t get that year back.
To add insult to injury, Michigan State is currently 8-0 and ranked 5th in the country by ESPN. It certainly seems that “big time football” is indeed obtainable while clinging to, at the very least, some semblance of integrity.
Now compare that with the situation at Carolina. As was discussed in one of Old MacDonald’s recent nightly updates, Butch Davis had this quote concerning Charles Brown:
And then Charlie Brown found out that heâ€™s going to be put on probation for two semesters. Heâ€™s got one year of eligibility remaining, so heâ€™ll stay on the football team and obviously heâ€™ll get a chance to practice and go through spring practice and use this year as a red-shirt year.
Carolina also plans on redshirting running back Ryan Houston. Houston was not announced as part of the agent benefit prong so we have to assume he is part of the academic prong for cheating (allegedly).
On a bit of a sidenote, here is a quote by Butch Davis on redshirting Houston:
“The resolution is if we need him to win games, we’re going to play him,” Davis said. “In the ideal situation that we would like not to.”
That’s quite the lesson Butch is teaching his players. You can sit out for cheating (allegedly) unless we need to win.
So Charles Brown and Ryan Houston cheat (allegedly) and get to redshirt. If they were Spartans, they would be “be charged with a season of competition”.
Lets take a look at some other examples of cheating suspensions around the country.
From ESPN.com, former Maryland QB Josh Portis was suspended for the 2007 season for cheating. Portis played in 2005 at Florida, sat out his transfer year in 2006, was suspended in 2007, played in 2008 at Maryland before transferring again to Division II California University of Pennsylvania where he had 2 years of elligibility. So Portis will still get to play 4 years of football but with the transfer down to Division II, I’m not completely sure how all that works as far as years of elligibility.
Another Maryland example, basketball player Dino Gregory missed the first 5 weeks and 8 games of the 2009-10 season as part of a 6 month suspension for academic misconduct, a suspension that was appealed twice unsuccessfully. Details here.
Former Syracuse WR Mike Williams played 2 years at Syracuse, was suspended and possibly expelled for cheating and left the school completely. He came back the next year as a senior but ended up quitting the team. Williams lost his junior year but since he wasn’t even enrolled at Syracuse he couldn’t have redshirted. You can read some details here.
In some older Duke basketball cases, Greg Newton was suspended for two semesters in 1995 after cheating on a computer science exam and Ricky Price
was suspended for two semesters in 1997 for plagiarism, both are mentioned here.
So in the case of Charles Brown and Ryan Houston, Michigan State appears to have a higher standard but a two semester suspension seems to be the going rate at other schools for cheating (allegedly) and redshirting can be an option. But I think it is safe to say without a doubt that The Spartan Way > The Carolina Way. And we’ve been led to believe that nothing is greater than The Carolina Way.
So here we have a player that has already been suspended by the NCAA for six games for taking $1,333 in benefits from agents. Then he is also involved in the academic prong for cheating (allegedly resulting in a failing grade in a course previously taken as purportedly dictated by the UNC Honor Court ruling) and gets to play again when players at other schools who cheated but didn’t take trips and money from agents have to sit out a year?!?
The News and Observer today printed statements from Tyrone Burney, Kendrick’s father, saying his son’s grade was not changed to a failing grade by the Honor Court, but rather it was changed from a C to a C-. Being that this writing course (if you recall the tutor was allegedly writing papers for players) is a core course, Burney must obtain at least a C grade to get credit for it. Therefore, the Honor Court changing the grade from a C to a C- is effectively the same action as changing it to an F. The end result is the same per Mr. Burney, that is that Burney is not going to graduate this semester and will have to take the class in the Spring. Therefore, the NCAA, assuming this is indeed true, has waived their own rule to allow a player to carry less than a full load to be eligible without that player being on course to graduate in the same semester.
Tyrone Burney said his son was cleared by the university’s honor court on Oct. 19. Burney had a grade in writing class from a previous semester – a core class necessary for Burney to graduate – changed by a half of a letter grade.
Burney did not fail the disputed class, which resulted in his appearance before the honor court, his father said. The grade was changed from a “C” to a “C-minus,” his father said. Under university policy, Burney needed a “C” in the core class to graduate.
The change in grade affected Burney’s academic standing with the NCAA. The NCAA requires athletes to carry a minimum of 12 credit hours, unless as a senior they need fewer hours to graduate.
Burney was on track to graduate in December, his father said, and is taking one class, or three credit hours, this semester. Since the grade was changed in the core class, Burney needs six hours to graduate. Under NCAA rules, he needs to be enrolled in six hours or receive a waiver from the NCAA to participate.
Burney received the waiver and the school announced his return on Tuesday.
Burney, a fifth-year senior, will have to re-take the class in the spring to graduate, his father said.
Read more: http://www.newsobserver.com/2010/10/27/762389/burney-cleared-to-return.html#ixzz13ZFEUVZw
We still contend that there are still questions to be answered regarding Burney’s miraculous comeback in light of the ongoing investigation in Chapel Hill that hits almost every corner of the football program. Particularly, Inside Carolina is reporting that Burney was cleared after the NCAA and UNC worked together to reach a resolution on Burney’s eligibility:
Burney missed the previous seven games. He was suspended six games for violations of NCAA agent benefits and preferential treatment rules and was held out of the Miami game while the University worked with the NCAA to determine his eligibility status.
Simultaneously, WRAL is reporting that Burney was reinstated after the UNC Honor Court made its ruling on Burney.
Burney was suspended by the NCAA for six games for accepting $1,333 in agent benefits that included trips to California, Atlanta and Las Vegas.
He served out that suspension and missed an additional game while the university honor court considered his case.
Which is it by the way? Did the NCAA have a hand in the clearing of Burney, or is this UNC’s unilateral circumvention of NCAA rules through preferential treatment of a student-athlete? Chances are good that the truth will never see the light of day as the UNC powers-that-be appear to continue their circling of the wagons around Baddour, Butch and the football program. (On a side note, the folks at SFN are still looking hard for the magical, mystical travel agent who can turn $1,333 into a trip to California, Atlanta, and Las Vegas.) The circling of the wagons is what we have all come to know as the “Carolina Way.” That term that we’ve heard so often in the past, the Carolina Way, is such an amorphous concept that is still difficult to define. Nonetheless, one thing is now certain:
In the case of Kendric Burney, the Spartan Way, the Terrapin Way, the Orangemen Way and the Blue Devil Way are all > The Carolina Way.