October 11, 2010
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) -- North Carolina star defensive tackle Marvin Austin was kicked off the football team Monday and the school said the NCAA has declared receiver Greg Little and defensive end Robert Quinn permanently ineligible.
The announcements from the school and the NCAA came as part of the ongoing investigations into whether players received improper benefits from agents.
"It's a sad day when three young men are no longer able to represent their school based on actions they have taken and decisions they have made contrary to NCAA rules," athletic director Dick Baddour said in a statement issued by the school. "Unfortunately, they made serious mistakes in judgment in accepting extra benefits and then not being truthful with our staff and NCAA representatives. Now they must forfeit the privilege of playing again for the Tar Heels."
The NCAA said Little and Quinn were ineligible because they violated rules governing agent benefits, preferential treatment and ethical conduct, saying they each accepted jewelry, travel accommodations and other benefits. According to facts submitted by the university, Little took nearly $5,000 worth of benefits and the value of Quinn's total exceeded $5,600.
The NCAA also said Little and Quinn were not truthful during three interviews with school and NCAA staff, and provided more accurate information only when they were faced with evidence that ran contrary to their claims.
Austin was suspended indefinitely from the team on Sept. 1 for violating unidentified team rules. In a one-paragraph statement announcing his dismissal, the school said the decision was based on recent information gathered during the joint investigation and also involved violations of rules for agent benefits, preferential treatment and ethical conduct.
The NCAA began its review of North Carolina's football program during the summer. It initially focused on agent-related benefits, but has since expanded to include possible academic violations involving a tutor. Because of those probes, the school withheld each of the three players from the first five games of the season.