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UNC: Six Players Ineligible for LSU; Nine Others Held Out

Okay, why didn't UNC release this like two hours ago to avoid the circus at the bus loading?

UNC announced that six Tar Heels would be ineligible for the opener vs LSU and six others would be held out pending the conclusion of the investigation. Also, three other players were not traveling at this time. Here is the release:

The six ineligible student-athletes include: defensive tackle Marvin Austin, cornerback Charles Brown, cornerback Kendric Burney, wide receiver Greg Little, defensive end Michael McAdoo and defensive end Robert Quinn.

Six other student-athletes who will be withheld from Saturday’s game include: tailback Shaun Draughn, defensive end Linwan Euwell, safety Brian Gupton, tailback Ryan Houston, safety Da’Norris Searcy and safety Jonathan Smith.

The number of games that those 12 student-athletes may miss has not been determined at this time. The investigation continues to include both agent-related and academic issues.

The University also continues to work today with the NCAA to determine the eligibility status of three other student-athletes. Those three will not accompany the team to Atlanta on Friday morning. Further information will be announced when a decision on their status for the game is reached.

Robbi Pickeral at the N&O is reporting the three unnamed players with their eligibility flapping in the breeze are Quan Sturdivant, Bruce Carter and Deunta Williams. It is my understanding that these three could have their eligibility issues worked out and travel to Atlanta on Saturday.

So let's be clear on what this means. If the list of 15 holds UNC will play LSU missing their entire starting secondary, two All-ACC caliber linebackers, two NFL prospect defensive linemen, their #1 WR and the lion's share of the running game.I guess that means Zach Pianalto is going to have like 20 receptions or something. If UNC can get at least Carter, Sturdivant and Williams eligible that helps but I am extremely pessimistic about UNC's chances in a game with huge chunks of key personnel missing from both sides of the football.

On a side note, Joe Schad is reporting on Twitter than there could be more which does not line up with UNC's position that anyone in question would not travel. By all accounts everyone is traveling sans the 15 players indicated by UNC and local media. It is possible UNC decides to hold players out on the basis of the academic probe but if there are others why not simply lump them in with the limbo trio?