Greg Little decided to play at the NC Pro-Am on Thursday which I am sure the Cleveland Browns would be thrilled about if the NFL was not currently almost not locked out. Afterwards Little addressed the local media about the NCAA investigation and parking tickets.
"I know I got a lot, that's really irresponsible,” Little said. “I know everybody receives parking tickets. I paid them. I paid them. They came from out of my pockets.
Little also explained the five different vehicles that were cited, but was not sure how the license plates could be so varied.
“I drove my mom’s car, dad’s car, sister’s car and I had two cars, I ended up switching, so that’s where that came from,” Little said. “But the nine license plates, that’s got me baffled too.”
Little was also quick to throw his support behind Tar Heels head coach Butch Davis, saying that he should undoubtedly keep his job, never knew of any student-athlete misdeeds and the blame lies solely on the players.
“He did nothing wrong,” Little said. “If you send your child out to the movies but he goes to a party, you don’t have control after you step out of the picture. He had nothing to do with anything that went on. It was all me and Marvin’s (Austin) ill-advised mistakes."
Um..okay. In his defense there has never been any kind of confirmed link between Little and Jennifer Wiley however based on the information I have gotten over the past several months from reliable sources the link exists. Little says he paid the tickets out of his own pocket which means he is lying now or Wiley helped a different student athlete with their tickets. I'll let you decide on which it is and the license plate fiasco too. Little denies he had multiple plates even though a thorough search of the parking tickets revealed the same car being ticketed with different plates on multiple occasions. Again take the denial with a grain of salt.
Little did go as far as to deflect blame for the NCAA mess away from Butch Davis and onto Marvin Austin and him. Little asserts that Davis did nothing wrong and cannot be expected keep track of all the players, especially if said players are deceptive in where/what they are doing. Truthfully most of this probe has been player action driven and while UNC needed to do a better job of monitoring things like social media, it still comes down to players making good choices.
Little's appearance creates an interesting PR sidebar to this whole ordeal. Like Austin's recent tweets, Little holding court with reporters creates a headache for UNC. The administration would prefer scandal news be limited to actual events like the COI hearing. It also creates potential conflict with the narrative being pressed by UNC. Those in Chapel Hill would much rather have a consistent information flow about the violations coming from either the university or the NCAA. Former players speaking to the media on its own disrupts that but it is largely unavoidable. Since these are former athletes UNC lacks the ability to control them outside Davis calling them and asking they lay low as a favor to him. In addition there are plenty of UNC fans who think Little, Austin and anyone else involved in this mess would simply go away.
Such is the great dilemma UNC faces going forward with these players who are part of the Tar Heel football program but carry a fair amount of unwanted baggage.