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Hairston Says He Will Play This Season

Streeter Lecka

Good catch by Aaron Dodson at the Daily Tar Heel who tracked down P.J. Hairston on the outdoor basketball courts near Ram Village.

An embattled P.J. Hairston stood alone on the outdoor courts in front of Ram Village Monday night, palming a basketball and putting up a few shots.

Moments earlier, the junior guard had been sitting inside his apartment when he heard the dribbling of basketballs outside his window. The itch returned, and after sending a tweet that he’d be playing on the courts, Hairston headed outside.

"I finished my homework," he said. "I was sitting in the room bored, so I was like, ‘Well, I hear people playing outside all the time.’

"I figured one of these nights I’d come out."

Hairston’s fate following an indefinite suspension is still up in the air, but he told The Daily Tar Heel that he believes he’ll be suiting up for the Tar Heels this season.

"Yeah, I’ll be on the court," he said. "I’m not sure how long I’ll have to sit out. I haven’t found out yet, but whatever it is I’m ready for it."

This isn't really new information. UNC athletic director Bubba Cunningham said as much a couple of weeks ago to the faculty at a retreat. Barring some earth-shattering development, everyone assumes at this point Hairston will serve some type of suspension from the NCAA or the NCAA and Roy Williams combined.

The fact there have been no additional news items or any other sordid details dredged up by the media-at-large falls under the "no news is good news" heading. Assuming the NCAA angle is still limited to some questionable rentals with little evidence pointing to extensive abuse, a suspension of a handful of games is probably what the NCAA hands down with Roy Williams possibly tacking something else on.

At any rate, it does sound as though Hairston is trending in the right direction and the sooner there is a resolution the better it will be for everyone.