North Carolina defensive backs Kendric Burney and Deunta Williams are the first Tar Heels to officially receive punishment from the NCAA regarding improper benefits from agents. They are two of the 12 players who have missed the first two games of the season already, and in addition to missing more they will both have to repay the value of their contributions.
via University of North Carolina release:
Burney, who received $1,333 in benefits, must miss six games and make repayment of $575.19 to a charity of his choice. Williams, who received $1,426 in benefits, must miss four games and make repayment of $450.67 to a charity of his choice. Both student-athletes already have sat out two games.
"We plan to appeal the length of the suspensions," says Dick Baddour, North Carolina Director of Athletics. "While I respect the NCAA process, I believe the penalties to be unduly harsh given the individual circumstances in these cases."
The university declared both student-athletes ineligible for violations of NCAA agent benefits and preferential treatment rules. According to the facts of the case submitted by the university, these benefits in part included trips to California, Atlanta and Las Vegas for Burney and two trips to California for Williams. The majority of the benefits Burney received were from an individual who meets the NCAA definition of an agent.The good news for Williams and Burney, both preseason all-conference selections, is that they will get to see the field this season. Hopefully, it will be in time to make a difference for the 0-2 Tar Heels. North Carolina has been completely depleted in the secondary, with all four original starters being in the group of players held out of games.
Athletic director Dick Baddour did admit that there would be suspensions, and they would be announced on a case by case basis. The announcement of Burney and Williams may mean that we could be seeing more (or even the remaining) punishments handed down in the coming weeks.
Unless the length of the suspensions are successfully appealed, Williams' first game back in uniform will be October 9 when the Tar Heels host Clemson and Burney's will be October 23 at No. 19 Miami (FL) .