Cunningham updated the Faculty Athletics Committee on important litigation and changes to the governance of college athletics in the committee’s first meeting of the academic year.
The NCAA is appealing the O’Bannon v. NCAA lawsuit in which U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken ruled that the monetary amount of scholarships cannot be capped below the full cost of attendance.
The full cost of attendance includes room and board, tuition, books, food, supplies and transportation. Cunningham said the value of a full in-state scholarship would increase by $4,382 and a full out-of-state scholarship would increase by $6,118 if the school covers the full costs of attendance.
“My concern is that we’re going to spend more money on fewer kids,” Cunningham said.
Wilken also ruled that the NCAA cannot cap pay for individual football and men’s basketball student-athletes at less than $5,000 for the use of their name, image or likeness. Each athlete on these teams must be paid equally under the ruling and the money would go into a fund that could only be accessed once the athlete left school, Cunningham said.
If the University begins to meet the full cost of attendance for scholarships and the number of scholarships remains the same, there will be about $1.7 million in additional athletic scholarship costs per year, Cunningham said.
The name, image and likeness costs would be about $490,000 if the 98 football and men’s basketball student-athletes on scholarship were paid $5,000 each, according to presentation given by Cunnigham.
“No one has really thought through what Title IX means to any of this,” Chancellor Carol Folt said. “It has huge implications.”
Folt said the requirements of Title IX would likely double the name, image and likeness costs for the University because Title IX mandates equal treatment of men’s and women’s sports.
Lissa Broome, the University’s Faculty Athletics Representative to the ACC and NCAA, gave the committee an overview of the academic performance of athletes during the 2013-14 year.
Broome said 347 UNC student-athletes out of about 770 made the ACC Academic Honor Roll during 2013-14, which set a school record for the second year in row. However, she said that committee members were right to be concerned about some declining academic performance statistics in football and men’s basketball.
Folt addressed the academic scandal saying the upcoming findings of a report by Kenneth Wainstein, a former federal prosecutor, would determine if more reforms are needed in the University’s athletic program.
“My biggest concern in all of this is the student-athlete on campus today,” Folt said. “They’re the ones that are paying and they’re paying a terrible price and they’re not responsible for any of it.”