This post is probably not a surprise to most. It is probably more of a surprise that I am just now writing about it.
Yesterday, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill released the Notice of Allegations that was sent to them on May 22. The report was a redacted version but what was released was damaging. We found out what many, including myself, have been saying for years-there is some shady business happening in that athletic department.
Now before you get your t-shirts all in a bunch, please do not come at me with this whole I am only saying this because it is UNC-CH mess. The rivalry between my alma mater and this school has absolutely nothing to do with my stance regarding this situation. Contrary to what you may believe, I have a great deal of respect for this university as a whole. To some extent. Let me rephrase. I have a great deal of respect for those who work at the university and are not a part of this scandal. The ones who do their job the right way on a daily basis. I have a great deal of respect for my family, friends and colleagues who are graduates of this university; the ones who did things the right way. However, the allegations that keep spilling out of the hallowed walls of the buildings in Chapel Hill are disturbing, damaging and sickening.
I am not going to go all into the details of the report. You can read that for yourself. What I want to focus on is what has disturbed me the most about this whole ordeal-the fact that there are people who try and justify what has been taking place. Almost every day I read on social media or on a message board about how the allegations are not that bad or I see my favorite excuse, “everyone is doing it.” That is where you are wrong. Everyone is not doing it. Everyone does not have a whole fake class system set up through their athletic department. Granted, the African-American Studies Department is a legit department at UNC-CH, but for 18 years this department played a significant role in “enrolling” students in classes that never met or only got together once to turn in a paper.
What is even more disturbing is the amount of people that knew all of this was happening and they either a) did nothing about it or b) were a part of the problem. You see I have issues with coaches who enter into the homes of parents who are willing to entrust them with their child’s collegiate athletic and most importantly, academic career with intentions of only ensuring they remain eligible to exceed on the field. I have an even bigger issue with the fact that the a lot of these athletes come from situations where attending college on their athletic prowess is the only way they will ever get a college education. They are then used as pawns in this big game of chess. I also have issues with parents who see these types of things happening but do not speak up for their children for fear of backlash or the possibility of lessening their dream to play professionally.
There is no doubt in my mind that UNC-CH is not the only school that violating rules. I know there are other schools out there that are offering some type of impermissible assistance to help their student-athletes main their eligibility. Who knows if it is as wide scale as this one but I hope they get caught as well. However, at this very moment the spotlight is on UNC-CH and the NCAA has an opportunity to either a) take it easy on one of their cash cows or b) make an example out of them for not upholding the very morals they stress as the “Carolina Way.” And if you expect me to believe that coaches who were involved with the athletic programs in question had no knowledge of what was going on then I guess you expect me to believe nobody knows that happened to that Malaysian airplane.
Do I have a lot of faith in the NCAA? Of course not. Have you not paid attention to the inconsistency of their punishments over the years? The only thing consistent about the NCAA is their inconsistency. That coupled with the fact that this investigation has been going on for five years leads me to believe the NCAA will be lenient with their punishment. But they could prove me wrong.
Either way it goes, this whole thing is ridiculous. The reason this type of culture is so prevalent is because the NCAA is a mess itself. Collegiate athletics is very political, money driven and on a daily basis it allows programs to operate in a manner that stresses the importance of athletics over academics. At least on some campuses.
For now, I will just sit back and wait for the ruling. Should be interesting. I just hope their ruling does not prove me right. Oh, wait. Too late.
Until next time…TOODELLS.