GREENSBORO — A month ago, the talk surrounding North Carolina's football team was about its top-notch defense, its opener against LSU, and whether it might have a shot to make it to the league championship game.
So quarterback T.J. Yates admitted Sunday that is it frustrating that chatter has instead turned to the ongoing NCAA investigation.
"It's a little bit of a distraction, but the good thing is we're not in school right now -- so we get a little bit of a break before, and when we come back hopefully this will all be resolved, and we'll be ready to play,'' he said.
The NCAA is looking into violations that may have been caused by improper contact between agents and college athletes. Greg Little Sr., the father of Tar Heels receiver Greg Little, said his son was interviewed by the NCAA. The Charlotte Observer and News & Observer have confirmed that defensive tackle Marvin Austin also was interviewed. Investigators also have met with University of South Carolina tight end Weslye Saunders, who is from Durham, and Alabama defensive tackle Marcell Dareus.
Yates, a senior, said he learned about the investigation via team chatter, "and then of course it blew up in the news and on the internet."But he is trying to take a positive approach. "No matter what happens, we're going to learn from it -- get through it,'' he said at the ACC Kickoff. "The adversity is hitting us early, so we're going to be able to get over it, and come together as a team.
-- Robbi Pickeral