Two former North Carolina athletes sue school, NCAA over academic scandal

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While the academic scandal involving the University of North Carolina athletic department has drifted into the background in recent months, there has yet to be any action taken by the NCAA (and who knows if the governing body will deem it necessary to take action). Thursday afternoon it was reported by Steve Berkowitz of USA Today that two former UNC student-athletes, football player Devon Ramsay and women’s basketball player Rashonda McCants have filed a lawsuit against the university and the NCAA.

The lawyers in the case, who are also representing the plaintiffs in the Ed O’Bannon lawsuit, would like to see the case given class action status. Among the allegations made in the lawsuit are that North Carolina failed to provide “academically sound classes with legitimate educational instruction,” and that the NCAA was negligent in its work to prohibit academic fraud from occurring.

The suit seeks unspecified damages and asks for “the formation of an independent commission to review, audit, assess, and report on academic integrity in NCAA-member athletic programs and certify member-school curricula as providing comparable educations and educational opportunities to athletes and non-athletes alike.”

Yesterday it was reported by The Chronicle for Higher Education that the NCAA is currently investigating allegations of academic fraud at 20 schools with 18 of those being Division I members.

McCants is the sister of former North Carolina men’s basketball player Rashad McCants, who last June claimed that while at the school he was steered into phony courses in order to remain eligible. An investigation revealed multiple phony courses within the school’s African and African-American Studies department.