Blame it on Boxill?

In our previous blog post, “Navigating the Flagship Post-Wainstein,” we noted that UNC-Chapel Hill has gone to great lengths to create the appearance of transformative change even as it has sidestepped the major structural issues brought to light by successive investigations of its athletic-academic scandal. Since the spring of 2012, […]

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Navigating the Flagship Post-Wainstein

With New Year’s resolutions bearing down on us once again, from the vantage point of paperclassinc one broad question looms over all others: Can American universities make the resolution to change the broken system of big-time college sports? Pressure is certainly coming from the outside. In 2014, a series of […]

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Who’s at fault in South Bend?

The news from Notre Dame sounds depressingly familiar. Academic fraud has infected the storied football program, with several players already implicated and hints that “the scale of alleged fraud is comparable to the highly-publicized case at North Carolina.” Notre Dame can now be added to the long list of schools […]

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Confessions of a Whistleblower by Mary Willingham

A lot of time and energy has been invested over the past several months into the exposure of my real and imagined flaws. UNC contracted with a “three expert” panel that pored over statistics and concluded that my diagnostic testing and board scores (some of which they never even saw) […]

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Willingham’s Written Testimony: Hearing on Promoting The Well-Being and Academic Success of College Athletes

Written Testimony of Mary Willingham Commerce Science and Transportation Committee Hearing on Promoting The Well-Being and Academic Success of College Athletes July 9, 2014 I worked as a Learning and Reading Specialist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH) in the Academic Support Program for Athletes from 2003-2010. […]

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Rashad McCants

The testimony of Rashad McCants on ESPN’s Outside the Lines (OTL) on June 6 took the UNC scandal to new and more hideous heights. This is not because critics of the University learned anything particularly new that day. Star players took no-show classes? They had tutors providing them unlimited forms of assistance for […]

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Mary Willingham: A Response to the ‘Group’

First and foremost, I will let the legal system (not Bradley Bethel or Andrew Perrin) sort out the case of my IRB, FERPA, and HIPAA. In a meeting on April 21, 2014, Chancellor Folt told me that it was up to a judge. I am prepared to answer all questions […]

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Jay Smith: That Infamous IRB Application

At long last, the public release of Mary Willingham’s IRB application of 2008 makes it possible to comment directly on its alleged failures. (Until the form’s release this week it was unclear to Willingham and me whether the IRB still retained the original copy of the application. IRB officials did […]

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Congressional Hearing Panel For College Athletes To Be Rescheduled

The panel for the congressional hearing titled, “Promoting the Well-Being and Academic Success of College Athletes,” has been postponed until further notice. Whose interests are being looked after on Capitol Hill? Is it really about helping the unpaid college athletes who have no health care, no workers compensation, and are not […]

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My Farewell to UNC-CH

Today is my last day at Carolina, but my work is far from over. It became clear some time ago that the corrupt system of college sport would not be fixed at the ground level. The only way to dismantle a cartel is to go after their illegal money making […]

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Jay Smith: A Word on the Media

My colleague Andy Perrin is in high dudgeon over the media’s treatment of UNC. In a blog post this week, he expressed his resentment over the recent New York Times article that praised the investigative journalism of Dan Kane of the N&O. Perrin is convinced that the N&O‘s coverage of UNC […]

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John Shelton Reed: Letter to Joel Curran

John Shelton Reed, William Rand Kenan Jr. Professor Emeritus with the Department of Sociology at the UNC-Chapel Hill, has written a letter to Joel Curran, Vice Chancellor for Communications and Public Affairs for UNC-Chapel Hill. The letter from Reed discusses the scandal at UNC-Chapel Hill and how the university has poorly handled […]

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Jay Smith: Speech of Acceptance for the Robert Maynard Hutchins Award

To read the text of the speech, please download the RMH Speech PDF.

Jay Smith On Mary Willingham’s Enemies

Disclaimer: Mary Willingham initially objected to this posting; I thank her for relenting to my request and allowing me to use her web site as a platform to make it public. A great deal of energy has been expended since January, 2014 in an effort to disparage, discredit, and defame […]

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NCAA Draft Proposed Governance System Redesign

The NCAA redesign is weak and still lacks in academic support. Read the NCAA Division I Steering Committee on Governance document.

Response to UNC’s Independent Evaluation of Research

To avoid technical discussion and to get right to the heart of the matter, I will simply say that the three outside experts who conducted the “independent” review of my data did not come close to replicating my analysis. They were unable to do so because they were denied access […]

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Open Letter to the NCAA

The Women’s Sports Foundation is asking for you to sign-on to the Open Letter to the NCAA regarding the recent Northwestern decision. Please email Sarah Axelson ( with your intention to sign-on as either an organization or an individual by April 15, 2014. 

Jay Smith: Starting Over With Bradley Bethel

When I learned last week that UNC learning specialist Bradley Bethel had launched an unprovoked personal attack on me at his website, I reacted first with a certain amount of disbelief (I asked him: “Have you lost your mind?”) and then—as is my habit—with a flood of words. Over a […]

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Scandal Statement Release from UNC-CH Retired Faculty

Retired UNC-Chapel Hill faculty statement on the continuing scandal. Of all the questions surrounding the long-running academic-athletic scandal on the Chapel Hill campus, one of the most perplexing and troubling concerns the faculty. Professors, whatever their discipline, are above all else committed to the pursuit of knowledge and to the educational development […]

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On Behalf of The Drake Group: Jay Smith honored with Hutchins Award

Drake Group Honors University of North Carolina Professor With Hutchins Award for Courageous Defense of Academic Integrity   Date: April 3, 2014 West Haven, Conn. — A professor who specializes in early modern French history at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill and played a significant role in […]

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