Sports

UNC football program self-reports NCAA violation, takes ‘disciplinary action’

UNC athletic director Bubba Cunningham watches a football came against Cal at Kenan Stadium in Chapel Hill on Sept. 2, 2017. North Carolina self-reported an NCAA violation in February by its football program, Cunningham said in a statement late Wednesday.
UNC athletic director Bubba Cunningham watches a football came against Cal at Kenan Stadium in Chapel Hill on Sept. 2, 2017. North Carolina self-reported an NCAA violation in February by its football program, Cunningham said in a statement late Wednesday. News & Observer file

North Carolina atheltic director Bubba Cunningham said Thursday morning the reason the school self reported a NCAA violation was because it found that football players were selling shoes.

That would be considered an extra benefit, which is against NCAA rules. Cunningham said he didn’t know off hand how many players were selling shoes.

The violation was deemed “a secondary violation,” which is considered minor. However, multiple players are expected to be suspended.

The news was first reported by WRAL’s Jeff Gravely.

According to NCAA.org, “penalties for secondary violations usually are not as severe as those for major infractions, but they may be more than a ‘slap on the wrist.’ Secondary-violation penalties are tailored to specific situations. The rule outlining possible secondary-violation penalties includes possible fines, vacation of records and scholarship reductions, among other things.”

UNC said it self-reported the violation in February.

North Carolina self-reported a NCAA violation in February by its football program, athletic director Bubba Cunningham said in a statement late Wednesday.

The violation was deemed a “secondary violation,” he said.

“I worked closely with Chancellor Folt and Coach Fedora to address this issue from an NCAA, University and Department of Athletics perspective, and we have taken appropriate disciplinary action,” Cunningham said in his statement.

UNC’s statement does not specify what violation occurred. But the statement was released minutes after WRAL’s Jeff Gravely reported that some UNC football players could face suspensions due to offseason NCAA violations.

It is unclear how many players.

Robbi Pickeral Evans, a university spokesperson, said specific discipline for the players has not been finalized.

“We have high expectations of all of our students, coaches and staff, and we expect everyone to abide by and embrace team and NCAA rules,” Cunningham said in his statement. “We are disappointed when we fall short, and we always strive to get better.”

Alexander, 919-829-4822; @jonmalexander
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