The University of North Carolina has been cleared of any wrong-doing in connection to NCAA rules and student-athlete eligibility issues related to the African and Afro-American Studies program.
The NCAA has been investigating academic fraud within that program at the university for more than a year.
“The University first notified the NCAA that it had identified potential academic issues involving student-athletes in African and Afro-American Studies courses on August 24, 2011,” said UNC in a written statement.
UNC then asked the NCAA to join their investigation, and members of the NCAA enforcement staff began interviewing faculty and staff in the Department of African and Afro-American Studies.
“College of Arts and Sciences Dean Karen Gil subsequently commissioned a review of courses in African and Afro-American Studies,” the university stated. In May, UNC issued that report and provided it to the NCAA.
Earlier this month, former Tar Heel Julius Peppers’ transcript was leaked online, showing that he had taken classes in that African and Afro-American Studies program and made good grades in them despite being a marginal student overall. The transcript showed that problems in that department may have dated back further than UNC had acknowledged.
Quickly after the transcript was leaked, Peppers confirmed it was his and denied having ever cheated. He released a statement about it saying, “I can assure everyone that there is no academic fraud as it relates to my college transcript. I took every course with qualified members of the UNC faculty and I earned every grade whether it was good or bad.”
University officials say they will keep the NCAA informed if there are any new developments with the investigation.