CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) – Despite reports, the NCAA will not release its final report on the UNC academic scandal Friday at noon.
Vice Chancellor of University Communications Joel Curran released a statement after media reports stated the NCAA’s report and penalties would be released Friday at noon,
“Due to scheduling circumstances, there will be no release tomorrow regarding the NCAA Committee on Infractions decision. We have not yet received the Committee’s public infractions report. We anticipate we will be informed 24 hours prior to the actual release at a later date.”
The school faces five top-level charges, including lack of institutional control.
The focus is independent study-style courses in the formerly named African and Afro-American Studies (AFAM) department. The courses were misidentified as lecture classes that didn’t meet and required a research paper or two for typically high grades.
In a 2014 investigation, former U.S. Justice Department official Kenneth Wainstein estimated more than 3,100 students were affected between 1993 and 2011, with athletes making up roughly half the enrollments.
The NCAA has said UNC used those courses to help keep athletes eligible.
The case grew as an offshoot of a 2010 probe of the football program that resulted in sanctions in March 2012. The NCAA reopened an investigation in summer 2014, filed charges in a May 2015, revised them in April 2016 and then again in December.
Most notably, the NCAA originally treated some of the academic issues as improper benefits by saying athletes received access to the courses and other assistance generally unavailable to non-athletes. The NCAA removed that charge in the second Notice of Allegations (NOA), then revamped and re-inserted it into the third NOA.
UNC has challenged the NCAA’s jurisdiction, saying its accreditation agency — which sanctioned the school with a year of probation — was the proper authority and that the NCAA was overreaching in what should be an academic matter .
The NCAA enforcement staff countered in a July filing: “The issues at the heart of this case are clearly the NCAA’s business.”
CBS North Carolina will update this story as it develops.