The notice differed from its August 2015 predecessor on several points: men’s basketball and football are no longer mentioned, and impermissible benefits that athletes received related to the fraudulent classes in the former Department of African and Afro-American Studies changed to “impermissible academic assistance.”
The start date of the allegations of an inappropriate relationship between the athletic tutors and the former department also changed from fall of 2002 to fall of 2005.
The NCAA still alleges that UNC committed five level one violations — including a lack of institutional control — but the focus is now solely on women’s basketball. The team’s former tutor, , former secretary Julius Nyang’oro are the only people the notice alleges broke bylaws during the scandal, along with the entire University.
When asked about the changes, Director of Athletics Bubba Cunningham said only the NCAA decided what constituted a bylaw violation despite the fact the investigation was conducted jointly by the NCAA and UNC.
“My concern is the five allegations I have in front of me,” Cunningham said multiple times during a half hour conference call with reporters.
The amended NOA focuses on Boxill and her role with the women’s basketball team. Despite the original August notice mentioning that the fraudulent classes disproportionately helped men’s basketball and football, tutors for those teams are not mentioned.
UNC’s reporting of new potential violations on the women’s basketball and men’s soccer teams in August extended the timeline of the NCAA’s investigation in August, but the men’s soccer team is not mentioned in the report. Cunningham said the men’s soccer violations have already been adjudicated.
The University has 90 days to respond to the new notice and Cunningham said UNC would likely use all 90 days, which would be July 24.
According to the amended notice, former philosophy professor Jan Boxill requested a grade for a student-athlete from the Department of Exercise and Sport Science and is also cited for misconduct in the departments of psychology, African-American studies and philosophy.
Her attorney, Randall Roden of Raleigh-based Tharrington Smith LLP, released a statement defending the former faculty chairperson.
“There is no legitimate reason for the women’s basketball team to be singled out for special scrutiny or punishment,” the statement said.