Education

UNC players could face campus Honor Court

Posted October 12, 2010

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— Some suspended University of North Carolina football players could face a student-run disciplinary system as part of a university investigation into allegations of academic misconduct.

Seven players remain suspended while the NCAA and UNC determine their eligibility. Parallel investigations are being conducted into alleged dealings with sports agents and academic violations.

UNC has suspended safety Jonathan Smith for the full season, and the others who remain on the sidelines are defensive ends Linwall Euwell and Michael McAdoo, safety Brian Gupton, tailback Ryan Houston, fullback Davon Ramsay and cornerback Charles Brown.

University officials won't disclose which player is being questioned as part of each investigation.

The three players dismissed from the UNC football team on Monday – defensive tackle Marvin Austin, wide receiver Greg Little and defensive end Robert Quinn – were punished for receiving trips and jewelry from agents and then lying about it. None was involved in the academic violation probe, according to Athletics Director Dick Baddour.

If the university finds evidence of academic misconduct involving a player, his case will be referred to the Honor Court on campus, Chancellor Holden Throp said last week.

The student-run tribunal investigates possible violations of UNC's 29-page honor code. The code includes such infractions as plagiarism, falsifying information and helping others cheat, as well as lesser known offenses like conduct that harms the university's integrity.

Students said Tuesday that some professors take the honor code so seriously that they require those in their classes to sign an honor policy for each homework assignment and before every exam.

"Comparable to a court of law is what we try to do in the Honor Court," said Alexis Ivey, a UNC senior who served on the panel for two semesters.

A defendant is represented, and witnesses can be called during a hearing, Ivey said.

Old Well UNC players could face campus Honor Court

"After we hear all the evidence and the witnesses, things like that, we vote on whether we find the defendant guilty or not guilty, and the process works from there," she said.

The Honor Court can sentence students, and the code outlines penalties for specific violations. The most serious penalties, including expulsion, have to be approved by the chancellor.

If a student appeals the decision of the Honor Court, faculty and staff get involved in the process.

None of the 65 current members of the Honor Court, who are chosen through an application process, would speak with WRAL News.

At a recent UNC Board of Governors meeting, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Winston Crisp said he believes fellow students can be objective when ruling on high-profile football players.

"I am absolutely comfortable that these athletes are being treated the same way we treat every student," Crisp said.

UNC students said they trust the Honor Court to do the right thing in cases of football players that may come before them.

"As long as they are making good decisions, it's not a problem, whether it be adults or students," freshman Caleb Goodnight said.

"I think that it's tricky, but I have a lot of faith in my fellow UNC students, and I think that they are capable of making those sorts of decisions," senior Malia Losordo said.

"We try to go into it with an open mind, although we are fellow Tar Heels. We are all held to the same standards," Ivey said.

Thorp told the Board of Governors last week that he expects the Honor Court to wrap up its hearings in the coming weeks. The panel meets every day this week and next Monday and Tuesday.

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  • jbarron4950 Oct 13, 2010

    Dick Baddour told David Glenn this afternoon that this prong of the "review" is nearly over. Yet these cheaters STILL haven't even gone before the Honor Court???....Mr. French

    If you don't comprehend what you read, then don't comment. The PURPOSE of the REVIEW and INVESTIGATION is to DETERMINE if certain student have committed infractions that WARRANT them going before the Honor Court. And since we have not seen or heard the evidence where do you come off calling them cheaters? Again, just another uninformed person who is putting the cart before the horse.

  • stra5553 Oct 12, 2010

    i went to UNC in the 70s and I believe now as I did then that the Honor Code was a joke as is the Honor Court. We were forced to sign it or we could not go to classes. Most students signed it not reading it or caring what it said, only because they had to

  • mjeffrey Oct 12, 2010

    Could???????
    NO! they SHOULD face the Honor Court just as any other student suspected of cheating would be.

  • jdupree Oct 12, 2010

    THEY SHOULD GO BEFORE THE HONOR COURT AND BE SUBJECT TO THE SAME INQUIRY AS ANY OTHER STUDENT AND IF FOUND TO BE GUILTY OF CHEATING, BE SUBJECT TO THE SAME PENALTY, NO MORE, NO LESS. IF FOUND GUILTY, THEY WILL LIKELY LOOSE CREDIT FOR THE COURSE AND IF MULTIPLE INCIDENTS OCCURRED, MOST HONOR COURTS WILL LOOK AT A SEMESTER OF REMOVAL FROM THE SCHOOL OR EXPULSION. THIS WILL LIKELY AFFECT THEIR ELIGIBILITY TO PLAY BALL AND BADDOUR WILL LIKELY DOWN-PLAY THIS. THIS WILL DETERMINE IF UNC IS AN HONOR DRIVEN UNIVERSITY OR ONE WHERE THE ENDS JUSTIFY THE MEANS!

  • Mr. French Oct 12, 2010

    Dick Baddour told David Glenn this afternoon that this prong of the "review" is nearly over. Yet these cheaters STILL haven't even gone before the Honor Court???