Thorp, Baddour, Davis Update BOT

Thorp, Baddour, Davis Update BOT

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- North Carolina chancellor Holden Thorp, athletic director Dick Baddour and head football coach Butch Davis updated the Board of Trustees on Thursday about the status of the NCAA probe into the program. Here are some of the excerpts of note ...

CHANCELLOR HOLDEN THORP

"The way we have chosen to address this - working to get all of the facts in the investigation in cooperation with the NCAA, and making sure that all of the students who were affected by this got the same due process that would be due to any student at the University or any student-athlete on any NCAA team - none of those things made this easier or faster, but we think those were the right things to have done and we certainly feel we made the right choice ...

"The fact-finding portion of the investigation is nearly concluded. There are just a few things being tied up by the NCAA. The University feels at this point that we've done nearly everything that we need to do. A lot of the most important interviews have taken place ...

"I don't feel good that we're in this situation, but I feel good about the way that we've handled it and feel good about where we're headed. I particularly feel proud of the fact that we faced this head on, disclosed that we had issues that we needed to work on and aired on the side of caution with the student-athletes, and addressed it with a 12-member review committee that included members of the faculty ...

"Our review committee, in partnership with the NCAA, has conducted more than 60 interviews of students on the football team, athletic department staff and academic support staff. The NCAA has been to campus seven times and the secretary of state's office has been here twice. We are not aware of an upcoming visit by the NCAA so we think they have have made their last visit...

"Through all of our work, over four months, we have found no information that Coach Davis was involved in any of the problems that have surfaced. I know that he feels a great responsibility for the situation because it happened on his watch - just as Mr. Baddour and I feel a great responsibility to address the problems - but we have found no reason to make any more changes in the football program other than the ones we have already made in terms of changing assistant coaches and the students athletes we've had to process."

ATHLETIC DIRECTOR DICK BADDOUR

"As Holden said, in general, the fact-finding part of this investigation is near complete. We have a few remaining matters to handle and we will do so very soon. The NCAA, time and again, has acknowledged our good faith effort, our cooperation and the thoroughness of the review. We get those reports directly from them ... Now it is time to wrap up the investigative phase and turn our attention to the future ...

"We are very close to the completion of the investigative stage. Then what will happen is the investigative team at the NCAA will turn the information they have over to the enforcement staff and then they will assess that information and decide about if and when that part will come forward."

HEAD COACH BUTCH DAVIS

"I want to make it perfectly clear to everyone that I am embarrassed and saddened and disappointed about the negative light that the things in the football program have shed on the University of North Carolina. As head football coach I take full responsibility for everything that happens in that program ... we're going to do absolutely everything to ensure that this doesn't happen again ...

"I can't tell you that (recruiting) hasn't been affected some just from the uneasiness and the uncertainty of it, but what I can tell you is that prior to this review starting we were off to a very, very good start as far as recruiting was concerned. And we've had every one of the committed kids that we had prior to this review and the kids that weren't committed have been coming to games these fall weekends and they leave here convinced that this is a great place to go to school. ... That's not saying it's a finished product, we still have a lot of work to do in the coming months, but I think people realize that Carolina stands for character, integrity, academic reputation and they trust that we're going to fix what needs to get fixed.

"As tough as this has been, this institution stands for a great deal. The people that love Carolina, I am forever grateful that they've given me the opportunity to be the head football coach and I appreciate Holden and Dickie's support and I appreciate the Trustees. I know how disappointed you are, but I can tell you that as long as I'm the head football coach, nothing will mean more to me and to our staff and to our players than the character and integrity of the University. ... There is no one single player, game or season worth the character and the integrity of this University. That's my commitment and my pledge to you as we move forward into the future with this program."

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