Pat Forde

  • Dean Smith's former players backing Roy Williams in wake of North Carolina's academic scandal

    Pat Forde at Yahoo Sports1 day ago

    Dean Smith is alive but absent, his remarkable mind ravaged by the effects of dementia. While that has caused deep mourning among those who know and love the legendary former North Carolina basketball coach, there is one small sliver of relief regarding his current condition.

    He is unaware of the ongoing integrity crisis that has engulfed the program he built into a national model.

    "I'm tired of it," said former Smith-era player Richard Vinroot. "I want it fixed. I want it to end."

    The NCAA recently announced it has re-opened its investigation of an academic scandal at Carolina. That figures to follow the tracks of the school's ongoing (and latest) investigation of itself. Those investigations follow the drip-drip-drip of allegations of classroom shortcuts – and other embarrassing headlines – at a school that once proudly considered itself the ultimate intersection of competitive excellence and off-court class.

    "It pains me greatly," Vinroot said. "I have such high regard for Coach Smith. I revere him."

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