North Carolina’s academic scandal has claimed the brilliant final season Hakeem Nicks had in Chapel Hill in 2008. Nicks caught 68 passes and broke school records with 1,222 yards and 12 touchdowns, but he should have never been on the field. From the News & Observer:
NCAA documents show that Nicks received improper academic help in the spring of 2008 from a tutor implicated in the NCAA scandal at UNC. The NCAA called what happened “academic fraud.”
The NCAA report says the five papers were for coursework in an Education 441 class. The tutor has been identified as Jennifer Wiley of Durham. She has declined to comment and did not cooperate with the NCAA inquiry.
Nicks’ records will still stand, but his final season will be noted with an asterisk in the media guides. They’ll never be able to take away this catch he made in a 2008 bowl game. It has to be on the short list for best catches of the decade in college football.