Joe Schad: North Carolina is exploring the possibility of rolling suspensions spread over multiple games

Link to Schad’s twitter page here

Last evening, ESPN college football reporter Joe Schad was tweeting vigorously on the UNC football scandal.

North Carolina leaves for Atlanta at 9:30 a.m. on Fri. The school may know by they which players cannot play and which held for precaution.

North Carolina may be wiped out complely at RB against LSU

Star North Carolina DE Robert Quinn is being investigated for possible illegal interaction with an agent

North Carolina is exploring the possibility of rolling suspensions spread over multiple games

North Carolina is preparing to go without up to 16 players vs. LSU

Obviously, these are very interesting comments from Schad, so it is hard to figure out where to begin this entry.

-A couple of days ago, UNC fans rejoiced when defensive end Robert Quinn proclaimed his innocence as far as prong #2 of the UNC scandal – Nannygate. Well, apparently Quinn may have issues with “Agentgate” or what “Dickey” Baddour referred to as the 1st prong of the NCAA investigation.

As far as nannygate, there is actually a wikipedia entry on “nannygate”, but apparently NC State fans are slacking off as the entry has yet to be updated to include the 2nd prong of the UNC investigation which involves a former nanny/assistant/employee of Butch Davis and academic fraud involving UNC football players. Can someone get this entry updated?

-Rolling suspensions?!!?!?! What could this mean? Well, basically that sounds like spreading out the suspensions over the course of the season to minimize the impact of these suspensions in any single game. Maybe “rolling suspensions” would be expected at South Carolina or maybe at Florida State. However, “rolling suspensions” would directly contradict Butch Davis’ statement yesterday at his press conference:

“I’d like this to be perfectly clear,” Davis said. “There is no one single category that is more important to winning than the character and the integrity of this University’s football program.

“I think that’s an overwhelming conviction that I have, and I think it’s the same with this entire football program and the administration.”

Comments at last week’s press conference from Chancellor Thorp:

“Academic achievement and fairness are at the heart of the University of North Carolina and our Department of Athletics. We’re treating this with the seriousness that you would expect from this University. We will straighten this out,” he added. “We are still gathering information, but our hope is that the scope of this is limited.”

And of course these comments about integriy from “Dickie” himself:

Chancellor Thorp is right—academic integrity is at the heart of what the University of North Carolina and the Department of Athletics are all about.

There is no greater matter at stake, and we resolve to find any misconduct and to deal with it seriously, and through whatever measures are appropriate both by the University and the NCAA.

Let’s see…why would “rolling suspensions” even be an option for three leaders of that university when their public comments are about integrity of the program and university, academic integrity of the university, and fairness?

UNC’s schedule:
-Georgia Tech
-East Carolina
-William & Mary
-Florida State
-NC State

So “rolling suspensions” likely means, delay some of the suspensions to later in the season maybe against teams like Rutgers, East Carolina, Virginia, and/or William & Mary to minimize the impact of suspensions in any single game. Also, delay some of these suspensions to out-of-conference games in the 3rd and 4th game of the season to keep hope alive for an ACC title. Remember the quote from Butch Davis?

“I’d like this to be perfectly clear,” Davis said. “There is no one single category that is more important to winning than the character and the integrity of this University’s football program.

“I think that’s an overwhelming conviction that I have, and I think it’s the same with this entire football program and the administration.”

The spin coming out of Chapel Hill continues and if in fact “rolling suspensions” are implemented, then this comment from Butch Davis yesterday and those comments from Chancellor Thorp and “Dickey” Baddour at last week’s press conference are just more examples of reasons to not accept any of the spin coming out of Chapel Hill about this scandal.

Here is a personal story. I was the #1 tennis player for my high school during my senior year. That year was the first time high schools had a “team” state championship in addition to the individual tournaments that were customary. The weekend before our 1st round match on the following Tuesday, I got caught drinking upon arriving to my high school prom and immediately got sent home. Monday morning in the principal’s office when the two day suspension was being handed down, I mentioned my playoff match the next day because I was hoping for a “rolling suspension” for the lack of a better term. Maybe push it back to later in the week? Overall, I was a good kid, who stayed out of trouble, and made good grades. My principal stopped me before I could even finish the sentence and my two day suspension began. We lost that 1st round match the next day due to my absence. Nobody would have known if my suspension was delayed. There was no concern over media scrutiny. However, still my high school principal believed fairness and integrity were significantly more important than any single game or match.

How about you, Butch?

UNC fans(and their friends/fans in the media) around the country trumpet the “Carolina Way”. Dean Smith used that term in the title of one of his books. The term is used in the name of the scholarship for former student body president Eve Carson who was tragically murdered. This website for UNC graduate schools mentions the “Carolina Way” and excellence. Certainly, Chancellor Thorp, “Dickey” Baddour, and Butch aren’t going to make a mockery of the entire university.

However, if rolling suspensions are allowed by the NCAA and approved by UNC’s administration, then the “Carolina Way” will have officially been rewritten and a single descriptive word comes immediately to mind – bull$%!#.

General UNC Scandal

41 Responses to Joe Schad: North Carolina is exploring the possibility of rolling suspensions spread over multiple games

  1. WolftownVA81 09/02/2010 at 9:09 AM #

    Where is the outrage in CH or the media? Any self respecting alumni ought to be pretty pissed off about now. The stench of hypocracy is overwhelming. They are letting the FB program devalue the entire University.

  2. packplantpath 09/02/2010 at 9:11 AM #

    We will learn their real priorities via this investigation. Either they will self-flagellate their football program into oblivion to uphold their self-proclaimed academic standards of integrity or they will institute rolling suspensions in a mockery of a punishment in order to appease the athletic departments desire to win.

    These are mutually exclusive goals. It should be very interesting.

    From our perspective, either outcome is a positive.

  3. Bowlpack 09/02/2010 at 9:14 AM #

    Great piece! One would think that something as serious as a violation of UNC’s vaulted “honor code” would result in expulsion or academic probation at the very least.

  4. old13 09/02/2010 at 9:15 AM #

    Just to be the devil’s advocate for a moment, if there are, in fact, a large number to be suspended, would it not be fairer to the innocent players to spread out the suspensions? Otherwise the innocent get punished for the wrongs of others.

  5. waxhaw 09/02/2010 at 9:18 AM #

    ^ No

    How about to the thousands of students who are innocent? Is it fair to them to make a mockery of the academic code? Would they get similar treatment? What if your lab partner was suspended….wouldn’t it affect you? Think you could get their suspension delayed?

    They are already getting special treatment. Anyone not on the football team would be gone for a semester.

  6. packplantpath 09/02/2010 at 9:18 AM #

    In the immortal words of my great grandmother, life ain’t fair. When possibly half the team is involved, it is a team affair and the team should deal with the punishment.

  7. Daily Update 09/02/2010 at 9:19 AM #

    old13: Sorry, but I am not buying that. Those players chose UNC because of what UNC is supposed to stand for. College athletics is supposed to be about getting kids an education and teaching them about life first and foremost. Winning is important too, but there is an important lesson here for the “innocent” players on UNC’s football team to learn. Otherwise the university would just be teaching them that cheating/fraud/whatever isn’t that big of a deal.

  8. Bubba 09/02/2010 at 9:23 AM #

    I could see CBMFD rolling suspensions. DL must sit out every 3rd possession. LB’s are suspended every 4th possession. DB’s are suspended on all 3rd down and short plays.

    He may be on to something.

  9. newt 09/02/2010 at 9:25 AM #

    Here’s Roy Williams in the N&O today:

    “That’s as far as I can go; that’s as far as they want me to ask. They want me to keep my nose out of it, and I’m trying to do that – and gladly doing that, to be honest with you.”

    So just like the Twitter policy, the point is not to prevent cheating but to avoid the discovery of cheating.

    Read more:

  10. old13 09/02/2010 at 9:25 AM #

    :>) bubba

  11. GAWolf 09/02/2010 at 9:30 AM #

    Old13: The innocent will actually finally get a chance to play. Who are you kidding?

  12. Daily Update 09/02/2010 at 9:31 AM #

    Greg Little on UNC 2008 Final Four team. I am sure Roy didn’t intentionally lie to us.

    When are the folks at UNC going to learn? Stop talking, stop tweeting, stop facebooking….just shut it all down. Every word out of their mouths puts them in a worse situation.

  13. MBS 09/02/2010 at 9:34 AM #

    Really well done, SFN. That bunch has looked sanctimoniously down their noses at every other program for years, lauding themselves as “the standard” for all that is right. Now the curtain has been pulled back and everyone can see what is really happening . . . and not just with the athletics program — with the entire administration.

    I hate to rejoice in the misfortune of others . . . but it couldn’t happen to a more deserving bunch.

  14. Wolf1975 09/02/2010 at 9:37 AM #

    So if they were to suspend a player for a game or two, and the NCAA deems that player ineligible, than whatever game they played in would be vacated if they won, I simply can’t believe that UNC would let players of questionable character contuine to play at their prestigious school.

    If they were a school of integrity they would suspend everyone involved untill the investigation is done.

  15. TheCOWDOG 09/02/2010 at 10:02 AM #

    This is the Carolina way in full bloom, and frankly the way I’d do it. They will admit to NCAA reviews and academic investigation. However, should violations be proven, you will never, ever hear an admission of guilt.

    We will see guilty players (if that is the case)simply fade out of the picture over the course of the next month and by the end of the year see Butch resign and his staff dismantled.

    Mind you, their is no self censure forthcoming out of CH anytime soon. Well, with the Twitter/Facebook monitoring an exception. By the way, that’s exactly why Butch was able to pull the plug on Austin today.

    Now, what the NCAA might have in store is a different story. We can only wait and see.

    I wrote that yesterday and feel that it is more relevant today.

  16. baxter 09/02/2010 at 10:12 AM #

    do these programs even care about whether they have a game taken away or not? I mean in the long run, UNC wants to brag they beat the SEC, anyway possible. Dirtbags.

  17. MatSci94 09/02/2010 at 10:22 AM #

    Have any teams actually done the rolling suspension thing? I’ve seen it once or twice in pro sports (baseball maybe, big brawl with like 2/3 of a team getting 1-2 game suspensions). Did FSU do this (or try to) with their big scandal a couple of years ago?

    “We will learn their real priorities via this investigation.”

    I think we already have.

  18. bradleyb123 09/02/2010 at 10:56 AM #

    This is disgusting. It really almost makes me want to vomit on my keyboard.

    It’s not that I want them punished for the sake of punishment. But is it too much to ask simply for JUSTICE??? If they are allowed to have rolling suspensions, they will have suffered NOTHING (other than the hassle of figuring out which player sits for which game).

    It’s like putting a murderer in prison where he gets three delicious meals a day, and television privileges at “club fed”. Where’s the justice???

  19. highstick 09/02/2010 at 11:09 AM #

    If they are major violations, I don’t see the “rolling suspension” being played out. If they are minor, that may be the case. I think it was also be if it’s an NCAA issue or a institutional issue. I realize this is “splitting hairs”, but it may play out that the NCAA lets UNC “set their own penalties” in the case of minor violations.

    However, I don’t see any of these so far as being minor violations. I think there’s a major difference in academic cheating and Hotelgate.

  20. MatSci94 09/02/2010 at 11:15 AM #

    “it may play out that the NCAA lets UNC “set their own penalties” in the case of minor violations.”

    I think this is usually the way it works. The school does their own investigation and announces penalties, then the NCAA says if it is “enough.”

    Both FSU and USC did this with their most recent troubles. FSU tried to be harsh on other programs to not have to vacate football wins, and SC tried to nuke the basketball program to save football.

  21. Scooter 09/02/2010 at 11:45 AM #

    The NCAA has been in the news enough with this story that they probably realize that, at least on some level, their reputation is on the line. Unless I totally miss my guess, I can’t see them backing away from the major issues.

    Also, has the trail gone cold on John Blake? We haven’t heard his name in awhile. Any updates available?

  22. highstick 09/02/2010 at 11:58 AM #

    Here’s the link to some scenarios, particularly related to Hotelgate, that was in the Charlotte Observer yesterday. I’d forgotten where I’d read it:

    Again, note that this relates to “benefits” in the Hotelgate issue. I don’t see a correlation with academic cheating and I’m not sure how it may play out with the agent issue which is totally unresolved at UNC or South Carolina right now.

    Weren’t we even allowed to set some of our own penalties with V which then led to where we are now? As I remember the NCAA did not institute much of anything because we’d already done so.

  23. IamGumbyDammit 09/02/2010 at 12:11 PM #

    The punishment should at a MINIMUM be the same as the punishment doled out to a non-athlete student for the same honor code violation. If submittng sumeone else’s work would get a non-athlete student suspended for the semester or expelled from the school, so too should the athlete-student be suspended or expelled (and I say athlete-student as opposed to student-athlete because if UNX does implement rolling suspensions, it will be clear evidence as to which role has priority at UNX).

  24. IamGumbyDammit 09/02/2010 at 12:15 PM #

    grrr and i hate that the edit feature simply doesn’t work here lol

  25. highstick 09/02/2010 at 12:47 PM #

    Gumby, I don’t think there should be a difference either with an honor code violation. That’s why I keep referring to a difference in the SC and NC issues(excluding the agent issues with Austin and Saunders). I’ll totally agree with you that if the honor code says expulsion, the player is gone from the team, NCAA or not!

    What’s the problem with the edit function? You should be able to edit.

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