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North Carolina looks into reports on hoops team

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North Carolina is conducting its own investigation into media reports that link P.J. Hairston, the Tar Heels' leading scorer last season, to a convicted felon.

Hairston's name is not mentioned by the athletic department, but USA Today reported earlier that Hairston was tied to two vehicles rented by Haydn Thomas.

"The athletic department compliance staff and I are fully aware of recent media accounts related to our men's basketball team," North Carolina athletic director Bubba Cunningham said in the statement. "We take these matters very seriously and are looking into these reports and the inferences they contain with all due diligence.

"It is my practice not to comment on the individuals involved or the details surrounding these reports until we have sufficient understanding of the facts involved. We are still gathering information, learning information from other sources, and we will not comment until we have a strong grasp of each individual situation."

Cunningham said the university would consider disciplinary measures "where the facts show mistakes in judgment and/or actions."

Hairston was arrested June 5 for possession of marijuana and driving without a license in Durham, N.C. According to the police report, a 9-millimeter handgun and a magazine with nine rounds of ammunition were seized from the Yukon that was rented by Thomas.

Hairston also received a speeding ticket on May 13 in a 2012 Camaro SS, which USA Today reported to be rented by Catinia Farrington, who has the same address as Thomas.

USA Today's investigation found vehicles rented by Thomas or Farrington -- including the Camaro and a Mercedes-Benz -- receiving nine unpaid citations on North Carolina's campus between February and May.

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