In the middle of the build-up and resulting excitement related to NC State’s huge win over Florida State on the gridiron last week, some of the ‘UNC-CHeats scandal’ got pushed to the side a bit.
On Thursday afternoon, it was announced that a consortium of Triangle media outlets were suing UNC and some of its administrators for failing to comply with dozens of Freedom of Information Act requests. Specifics of the suit and some fantastic analysis that must be read is available by clicking here.
…Go ahead and click it and get a better grasp of what is going on here. Really, go ahead. It’s fantastic work that should have received a lot more attention than it did. We’ll wait for you…
This morning, the Charlotte Observer showed a little evidence that it has a pulse by publishing an editorial – ‘UNC should not hide records subject to law’
As News & Observer editor John Drescher put it, "There is evidence here of serious violations – UNC players accepting benefits from agents and academic misconduct. UNC has said it wants to get to the bottom of these problems in its football program. The best way to do that is to release these records."
The Observer’s editorial is excessively kind to the UNC administration as it incorrectly provides UNC the benefit of the doubt that all of the withheld records are related to students. As we learned last week, the only records released were a selective slice of data intentionally designed to create/paint/control a story exclusive to John Blake and agents…and nothing else. Of course this all hogwash and is a perfect example of just how much Carolina is trying to cover up and sweep under the rug.
The newspapers were able to use a narrow, targeted search of phone records to prove frequent contact between Blake and agent Gary Wichard, and that Blake was speaking with family members of highly regarded Nebraska defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh and then immediately contacting Wichard.
But the school redacted almost all of the numbers on Blake’s phone records, citing student privacy, privacy of numbers of other employees’ personal phones, and privacy of the phone numbers of prospective students.
So…those^ are the ONLY people with whom John Blake, Butch Davis and the other coaches call and/or with whom they correspond over email? They didn’t communicate with compliance, conduct any media interviews, personal business, or have any interaction with Rams Club employees, personal friends &/or alums? Heck…sounds like they should all be fired for incompetence and not keeping up with their responsibilities.
Why are personal phones of other UNC employees some how subject to STUDENT privacy laws? What about the university provided telephones of other UNC employees? It doesn’t appear from the N&O’s comments that communication amongst coaches, compliance employees, professors, administrators and Rams Club employees have been released. How can anyone remotely contend that communication is subject to STUDENT privacy laws?
So, Butch Davis and his coaches have never spoken or emailed with a single alumnus or Rams Club booster? How is that kind communication subject to STUDENT privacy?
Why are personal phone calls and emails to lawyers, agents, bankers, accountants and other professional service providers that are common-place to every person’s daily lives in 2010 subject to STUDENT privacy?
Why are personal phone calls and emails to family members and other friends some how subject to STUDENT privacy laws? Remember, these phones are public property paid for by the University of North Carolina.
Why would communication between Carolina football coaches and high school football coaches be subject to STUDENT privacy?
Why would communication between Carolina football coaches and family members of recruits be subject to STUDENT privacy?
Why would communication between Carolina football coaches and high school recruits who never became students be subject to STUDENT privacy?
Why would communication between Carolina football coaches and media members be subject to STUDENT privacy?
When Jennifer L. Wiley was no longer a student at the University of North Carolina and was working for the Butch Davis family, why would communication between Butch Davis and a personal employee of his family be subject to STUDENT privacy? Remember just how important it was for everyone to know that Ms. Wiley was a personal employee of the Davis family and had no affiliation with the University? (You know…after they fired her for ‘inappropriate relationships’ that were bad enough to get her fired; but not bad enough to warrant any further investigation by the University?)
As we leave you with some of these common-sense questions to ponder, allow me to befuddle you one more time. While speaking to the press last week, UNC Head Football Coach Butch Davis reportedly said to following:
"It’s good. It’s good for the football team. It’s good for Kendric Burney. He’s a good kid. It has been torturous for him to go out to practice every single day for the last seven ball games and to have to watch everybody and not be able to go out there. This is a kid that’s been a four-year starter for this football program. He’s three hours away from graduating and he wants so desperately to join his teammates and help, so it’s good to get him back."
Hold on there, Coach. What is going on here? Either you CAN or your CANNOT discuss the academic performance and matriculation of student-athletes!? Which is it? Kendric Burney’s academic matriculation and performance is supposedly highly confidential and not a topic that is remotely acceptable to discuss in public. It does not mater how many times others – including Burney or his family – choose to publicly discuss things…I thought the University was pretty clear on how important privacy is?
(Link) The NCAA launched an investigation in the summer focused on agent-related benefits, though it expanded to possible academic violations. Those cases were handled primarily by the school’s student judicial system, though privacy laws prevent the school from discussing in detail any player’s involvement in the academic review.
Clear as crystal, Carolina –
- You couldn’t talk about Kendric Burney’s academic/eligibility situation when the news was ‘bad’…or, you didn’t want the public to know what you were up to.
- But, suddenly it is perfectly fine to publicly discuss the exact same academic/eligibility situation of Kendric Burney once everything is ‘clear’ for him to play?
Classic!! Thanks for yet another lesson in the “Carolina Way”.