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A Few Tidbits – My Opinion on UNC Academic Fraud and more…

By May 23, 2015No Comments

UNC and the NOA

Finally, the first step in the process for The University of North Carolina has begun: the school announced this past Friday that it has received the Notice of Allegations from the NCAA. The school has 90 days to appeal the allegations, after which they would await a hearing before the NCAA. In some ways, this is a positive step for the school in that it means things are moving and the cloud that has hung over the program for some time may start to either begin to rain down or move away. It’s hard to imagine there will be nothing in the way of punishment for UNC but one never knows – the NCAA has yet to really prove it is in the business of fairness when it comes to rules, regulations, and punishments. I am sure we will all be awaiting the public release of the allegations once it has been scrubbed of student information.

What I found interesting was Roy Williams and his constant complaining about other schools negatively recruiting against UNC using the academic scandal as a tool as an aid. To that I say DUH, why would any school not mention it, and how can Roy Williams and his coaches go into a kid’s home and, with a straight face, commit to promising their child a quality education when for 18 plus years it wasn’t the case? Denying knowledge as Williams has, in my opinion, says more about what he walks into a home selling than anything else. Either, at best, Roy Williams was completely in the dark about the goings on education-wise of the kids he’s promised to look after and foster, selling a bill of disingenuous goods to parents, or, at worst, complicit in the perpetrated academic fraud turning a blind eye to it. To his complaints I say take your medicine, the truth often hurts but it’s also earned.

Derryck Thornton

A lot of Duke fans and Duke haters alike have asked about Derryck Thornton and his decision to reclassify and attend Duke University. There seem to be a number of people who deem the practice of reclassifying shady or bending the rules when in fact it isn’t. There are guidelines as far as graduation that the NCAA adheres to. Firstly, Thornton maintained the necessary GPA and the necessary scores on his SATs to be considered for Duke, that in and of itself should be enough. Thornton will turn 18 this month so age is clearly not a factor; he is older than at least two of the other recruits that are pledged to attend Duke this fall (Chase Jeter, Brandon Ingram).

There are those that think that there is some skirting of the education process but there is not; why wouldn’t someone with the necessary credits graduate early? What is the harm in it really? It’s a common practice and there is no evidence to suggest it’s harmful. Andre Dawkins, a player that graduated from Duke University and played on the basketball team reclassified and attended Duke early with no ill-effects so why the spotlight on Derrick Thornton? I’m not really sure.

I read one article that said, “He’s being rushed into college to play point guard for coach Mike Krzyzewski.” which is completely ridiculous. Thornton had his choice of schools whether he chose to graduate this year or next. He saw an opportunity and took it. Coach K has an impeccable academic track record with his players and the funny thing is that a lot of the vitriol being aimed at the Thornton decision comes from a school down the road with a giant academic scandal weighing over their heads. So perhaps they may want to clean their own nests before nosing around others, just a thought.

I had a question posed to me regarding Findlay Prep. It’s a basketball program with its education ties to Henderson International School. Yes it is accredited, yes it has put many students in Division 1 schools and yes it has been thoroughly vetted. Of course the kids who attend Findlay Prep are preparing and coveting a career in the NBA or at very least to play at a Division 1 school and there is nothing wrong with that. Findlay & Henderson actually are more singularly focused to not only to assure that the kids are receiving what they need academically, but athletically as well. Kids are much more focused on the core academic courses and are tutored for the ACTs and the SATs as well; they also have weight training and practices. It’s actually a very unique set-up and the proof is in the pudding: these kids qualify and these kids do not struggle, and the success of Findlay up to this point speaks for itself. By most accounts the kids are tasked with much more responsibility than the average high school student, that coupled with the living arrangements being more college-like, these kids are probably much more ready for a campus environment than most.

I’ve yet to see Coach K and staff allow a kid to fail or put a kid in a position to fail academically, and I don’t see why anyone should think it would change now. I say until there is actually smoke let’s stop trying to make this fire.

Recruiting tidbits:

Congrats to UVA for plucking a talent from Durham, Duke was interested but never offered, good pick-up by the Hoos though.