State wades into NCAA probe of UNC
Posted October 13, 2011 7:53 p.m. EDT
Updated October 14, 2011 7:43 a.m. EDT
North Carolina Secretary of State Elaine Marshall is asking a judge to order the NCAA to hand over documents linked to its investigation of UNC's football program.
The NCAA spent months investigating allegations of misconduct at UNC, including interviews with players, ex-players, coaches, and agents, including former assistant coach John Blake.
Improper contact between players and agents isn't just a violation of NCAA rules. It's against a state law written in part by the NCAA itself — the Uniform Athlete Agent Act, adopted by NC in 2003. Violations of that law carry a felony penalty. It's the Secretary of State's duty to oversee agents.
The NCAA's investigation of the UNC football program alleged players had received more than $27,000 in benefits, mostly from people identified as agents. Marshall wants to investigate - and she wants access to the group's findings.
Marshall subpoenaed the NCAA for its records this summer. But the organization refused to hand them over, saying it would only answer to a subpoena from its home state of Indiana. NCAA officials said even if they were to hand over the records, they would black out names and other information to preserve confidentiality.
In a motion filed Wednesday in Wake Superior Court, Marshall argues redacting the records would "frustrate" her agency's investigation. She wants the court to force the NCAA to comply because it does business in North Carolina. A hearing on the motion has been set for November 28th.
A bill that would have strengthened state penalties on agents who violate the 2003 law passed the state Senate this year, but stalled in the House.