A’s for Athletes, but Charges of Fraud at North Carolina

Sarah Lyall, New York Times, January 1, 2014

In the summer of 2011, 19 undergraduates at the University of North Carolina signed up for a lecture course called AFAM 280: Blacks in North Carolina. The professor was Julius Nyang’oro, an internationally respected scholar and longtime chairman of the African and Afro-American studies department.

It is doubtful the students learned much about blacks, North Carolina or anything else, though they received grades for papers they supposedly turned in and Mr. Nyang’oro, the instructor, was paid $12,000. University and law-enforcement officials say AFAM 280 never met. One of dozens of courses in the department that officials say were taught incompletely or not at all, AFAM 280 is the focus of a criminal indictment against Mr. Nyang’oro that was issued last month.

Eighteen of the 19 students enrolled in the class were members of the North Carolina football team (the other was a former member), reportedly steered there by academic advisers who saw their roles as helping athletes maintain high enough grades to remain eligible to play.

Handed up by an Orange County, N.C., grand jury, the indictment charged Nyang’oro with “unlawfully, willfully and feloniously” accepting payment “with the intent to cheat and defraud” the university in connection with the AFAM course—a virtually unheard-of legal accusation against a professor.

The indictment, critics say, covers just a small piece of one of the biggest cases of academic fraud in North Carolina history. That it has taken place at Chapel Hill, known for its rigorous academic standards as well as an athletic program revered across the country, has only made it more shocking.

Two reports on the activities of the African and Afro-American studies department, one internal and one conducted by a former governor of North Carolina, James G. Martin, found problems with dozens of courses and said as many as 560 unauthorized grade changes were suspected of having been made—often with forged faculty signatures—dating back to 1997. {snip}

Mr. Nyang’oro, who ran the department for 20 years, remains the mystery at the center of the case. Mr. Nyang’oro, who retired from the university in July 2012, is accused in the reports of teaching dozens of barely existent or questionably led classes and presiding over a department in which grades were illicitly changed, professors’ signatures were forged and athletes routinely enrolled in laughably lax classes.


Athletes, including many from the popular and revenue-producing football and basketball teams, made up nearly half of the students enrolled in the dubious courses.

The university says the blame rests firmly and exclusively with two people: Mr. Nyang’oro and Deborah Crowder, the department manager, who retired in 2009 after 30 years there.

Ms. Crowder had close ties to the athletic program and has long been in a relationship with a former North Carolina basketball player, Warren Martin. The two reports on the department’s activities each named Ms. Crowder as being involved in the infractions. {snip}

Some on campus and elsewhere are skeptical that just two people could carry out the questionable activities on their own. “How in the world could a scam like this go on for so long, and no one knew about it?” asked Mr. Smith, the professor.


A native of Tanzania, Mr. Nyang’oro came to the United States as a young scholar, and his résumé shows that he combined academic pursuits with numerous outside projects. After receiving his bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania in 1977, he earned master’s and doctoral degrees from Miami University and, in 1990, a law degree from Duke University.

Nyang’oro joined the North Carolina faculty in 1988 and, in 1992, was made the chairman of what would later become the African and Afro-American studies department. He has written extensively on African politics and economics and been a consultant for organizations in Washington, Ethiopia, South Africa and Zimbabwe, among other places.


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  • My problem with this narrative and with the criminal proceedings against Nyang’oro boils down to this phrase:

    The university says the blame rests firmly and exclusively with two
    people: Mr. Nyang’oro and Deborah Crowder, the department manager, who
    retired in 2009 after 30 years there.

    I think this went on with the complete blessing of the university administrators, or if not that per se, then implied support by means of refusing to disapprove. If I’m right, then it’s legally and morally impossible for Nyang’oro to have committed fraud.

    The reason I think that the school’s admins are behind it and weren’t victims of this is because it goes on all the time at a lot of schools. If it only happened in this short time frame at this one school, you might be able to say that it was just this one prof and a few other bad actors doing criminal things. But it just happens way too often in way too many places for it to be merely a coincidence.

    • Oil Can Harry

      Right. The universities create bogus courses that anyone could pass so their star athletes will appear to be getting an education.

      It looks like in this case the black professor was so shiftless he couldn’t even be bothered to show up to teach his fake class.

      • PvtCharlieSlate

        It looks like these jocks couldn’t even manage a 2.0 BA in psychology.

      • George Clark

        Cornel West had the same problem. That’s why harvard fired him.

    • Whirlwinder

      You bet the administration was behind it. Just follow the money trail. How much revenue does the football/basketball programs bring in anyway?

      • Brian

        There’s that, and the reluctance of those who might be suspicious wanting to accuse him, for fear of being branded rayciss. Double whammy.

    • SFLBIB

      [See my comment above about little Churchills.]

    • George Clark

      I’ve taught a lot of freshman english comp courses at the university level. I’ve never encountered a black “jock” who was too stupid to pass–at least by university rules. I gave a lot of “d’s,” but never had to flunk any of them, except in plagiarism cases. It’s a sad commentary on our university system that any of them can pass freshmen comp courses, even with a “d.” It’s a disgrace that any of them passed.

  • MekongDelta69

    The professor was Julius Nyang’oro, an internationally respected scholar and longtime chairman of the African and Afro-American studies department.

    Excuse me for just a moment…
    Hang on…
    Amost done…
    Ok. Back to normal. I was doubled over with laughter for a moment.

    • Katherine McChesney

      I always crack up when I read articles that make statements like this. Furthermore, I couldn’t pronounce his name if I had to.

      • ShermanTMcCoy

        It rhymes with “Negoro.”

      • Joe blow

        You don’t have to pronounce his name; he prefers to be called “Kingfish”.

        • Katherine McChesney

          I remember “Kingfish”. He was blustery and a buffoon.

          • Joe blow

            You’re dating yourself, Katherine; as I did myself, by bringing up the ancient Amos and Andy character.

    • ThomasER916

      That should be enough to set off bells and whistles. There was a time when “respected scholar” meant something because they were trained by Europeans. Now, they’re trained by the Cultural Marxists.

  • Hunter Morrow

    A is fo affletes, das goot enough fo me.

  • Druid

    Nothing to see here, just more of the same…

  • NotTooSwift


    This just in. It has been determined the Sun rises in the East and sets in the West. Details at eleven.

  • So CAL Snowman

    “A native of Tanzania, Mr. Nyang’oro came to the United States as a young
    scholar, and his résumé shows that he combined academic pursuits with
    numerous outside projects. After receiving his bachelor’s degree in
    political science from the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania in
    1977, he earned master’s and doctoral degrees from Miami University and,
    in 1990, a law degree from Duke University.”

    Just another worthless African propped up by the cultural Marxists with phony AA degrees in order to run a sham program at a renowned American University so that the precious black “scholars” would have a reason to be on an otherwise lily White campus.

    • bigone4u

      You nailed it with the phrases “worthless African,” and “phony AA degrees.” That law degree from renowned Duke U is disturbing however. Even the best schools have been corrupted. I hope the African and all his enablers go to prison, where they belong.

      • bilderbuster

        That won’t happen if the Alumni & the Bookies can help it.

      • r j p

        Don’t think there aren’t professional test takers.

        I wrote papers for (White) people when I was in school. It was a never a case of not being able to do the work, it was too lazy. It was ~$15 a page undergrad, ~$25 a page graduate level classes (MBAs). Lowest grade I ever got for somelse’s paper was a B, and the B was happy.

        • Fighting_Northern_Spirit

          I did that too once, unpaid, for an American-born mestizo co-worker (long before I came around to race realism). She was struggling with undergrad English comp, so I agreed to look over her term paper since I have an MA in English. I’m not the best writer, but I have a natural gift for editing. I told her to read over what I wrote, because she needed to learn the material eventually – I had visions of her failing further down the road because she obviously didn’t grasp basics like punctuation and grammar. She said she would but I doubt she ever did.
          She got an A+ on the paper, A- for the course, thanks to my 45 minutes of work. Amazingly, her instructor never questioned how a D+ student could suddenly write coherently overnight. She was being taught things at Cal State Northridge in 2002 that I learned in middle school in 1979, and she still couldn’t pass without help. So when people speculate about lowering standards due to diversity, I don’t doubt it one bit.

          • I wrote undergrad termpapers for money, but never for anyone in a university I attended or the entire UC system while I was a student there. I also never did this for blacks or Mexicans, but I made a lot of money this way. Some of these I banged out on an old typewriter just to make them look more authentic. I charged $25 per page of single-spaced work.

    • Brian

      According to The Most High Reverend Doctor Jesse Jackson, Esq. this Julius Orangutan is exactly the type of diversity that Oxbridge is desperately missing out on.

    • jfly

      Its one thing to have a law degree, I doubt if he’d ever try to pass a bar exam.
      I’m surprised that he isn’t referred to as the “esteemed” doctor.

  • bigone4u

    There are other ways to give degrees to idiots. In my economics classes at the university, I literally began to have morons in my classes–all black athletes with IQs around 70. I always wondered why the university didn’t hire a “diversity” to teach a section of only athletes. Part of the reason is I’m pretty sure the university sent ringers in to class to take the tests for the athletes (my classes were huge and anonymous) and/or bribed student workers who printed the tests for the profs to supply test copies in advance to the assletes. who were specially tutored by the athletic department. You can bet the highest level of administrators knew what was going on and turned a blind eye to it. Higher ed is corrupt in so many ways; that’s why I always say never donate money to a university or college.

    • r j p

      Read Tom Wolfe’s “I am Charlotte Simmons”. Depressing but informative.
      White’s in NCAA bassetball bench are GPA’s.

    • SFLBIB

      “If you don’t graduate the man, you have exploited him.” — Penn State Coach Joe Paterno.

      • Though I’ve never understood why it’s the responsibility of athletic coaches to “graduate” their players.

        • SFLBIB

          The responsibility rests not with just the coaches, but the athletes as well. Coaches, IMHO, have at least partial responsibility because they are the ones who recruit the Jet Jeters of high school athletics and provide them with a path to multi-million dollar contracts with professional sports associations. Perhaps there needs to be stricter scrutiny of HS students and their grades before they qualify for college sports.

          None of this is to mention that the primary objective of going to college is to get a higher education.

          • Okay, so why are the only coaches who are said to have this responsibility are football and men’s basketball? It’s as if we’re supposed to think that every other college student is a competent adult that can order his or her academic business, but the typical football or men’s basketball scholarship athlete is an overgrown baby that must be ordered around and coddled and needs a warden.

            I’m being rhetorical, in case you didn’t notice.

          • SFLBIB

            No, that’s a fair question. I was just another face on campus when in college. If I didn’t graduate, no one would have exploited me. Football and basketball are big bucks to the schools, not to mention they are fat targets to feminists. They try to get the best players they can so they can sell their programs.

          • If black scholarship “afawetes” do graduate at all, are their degrees and educations worth the paper they’re printed on, considering the classes they took are easy passing grade basket weaving at best and Julius Nyang’oro style scams at worst?

            “Football and basketball are big bucks to the schools”

            Even though I understand that football and men’s basketball are net red ink in most cases. Unless a lot of the revenue for those programs is off label and flows outside the official books of the university, which is entirely possible, considering that most Hollywood blockbuster movies that gross a lot of revenue are said to have lost money for their studios entirely based on accounting scams and creative business manipulations designed to evade taxes.

            “They are fat targets to feminists”

            Except I rarely hear of campus feminists being outraged at the black heavy sports on campus or their practitioners. That would create a car wreck at the intersectionality of womyn and black, it would require feminists to be “racist.”

          • SFLBIB

            Haven’t you noticed that women are taking over football news casts? But consider, who would be more knowledgeable, Boomer, Big Daddy, The Bus, The Refrigerator, Concrete Charlie, even Golden Boy … or … Heather, Jane, or Joanie?

  • NothingMan00

    Every year I seem to feel more embarrassed for having attended UNC. Plenty of universities have scandals, but the ones at Carolina always seem to become national news.

    Thanks, diversity!

    • jackryanvb

      Does UNC have any alternative right, pro White journals? Blogs?

      There were many good alternative Conservative college newspapers in the 1980s. What happened?

      • NothingMan00

        When I was there there 5 or so years ago there was a conservative student journal called the Carolina Review, and that was really it.

        • jackryanvb

          Sounds dreadful. Sounds like a preppy version of Rich Lowry’s National Review.

  • ncpride

    In 2010, AmRen ran an article called ‘White Devils’ The Unbearable Whiteness of Duke Basketball, or something to that effect. The article explains how viciously that team was attacked because eleven of the fourteen players were White… but I think what really made them angry was those ‘White Boys’ WON games. Regardless, considering how difficult it is to actually be accepted at Duke, I like to think they had academic standards they would not compromise. However, jump forward to 2013, and the team only has four Whites. I’m sure all those rabid anti-Whites are thrilled, but now I question those academic standards after reading this article. Who wouldn’t?

    • evilsandmich

      Is the pope Catholic?

      • Brian

        A good question to ask these days.

        • Neuday

          As an orthodox Catholic your comment made me chuckle and wince.

          • Brian

            Hang in there. We need the Church to remain the Church– a foundational cornerstone of western civilization and a bulwark against the onslaught of cultural Marxism. In hoc signo vinces.

          • Katherine McChesney

            Interesting considering that the military arm of the Roman Catholic church, the Jesuits, ARE Marxist Socialist. Their black pope, Adolfo Nicolas, ‘calls the shots’ behind the scenes. Remember that Francis is first and foremost a Jesuit.

          • Brian

            The Jesuits have their own pope? Anyway, when I say ‘the church’ i mean every Christian, not just priests, or even just Catholics. My parents are Baptists and they sure aren’t marxists.

  • dd121

    What they describe in the article is simply normal negro behavior in every time and place where negroes are given some authority. The white man be waving money, ain’t I suppoze to be stealing it?

    • MBlanc46

      It might not be normal, but it’s probably within a standard deviation of it.

  • Spartacus

    When gr0ids get good grades, it’s always cheating. It’s not really complicated, you know…

    • ben no

      Well, no, some may be exceptional blacks with higher than average IQ. Come on be fair.

      • Tarczan

        The darkie population of the US is somewhere around 40,000,000. I’ll give you there have to be a few hundred bright ones in that group.

  • JohnEngelman

    Because athletic talent does not correlate with academic talent collegiate athletics encourages dishonesty of this sort.

    This is particularly true for big money sports like football and basketball. As long as an athlete wins games every accommodation will be made on his behalf.

    • MBlanc46

      If big-time college sports aren’t a complete fraud, they’re very close to it.

    • capnmorgan5150

      Even if they don’t win games, they get treated with kid gloves!

  • Rhialto

    Aren’t fraud and African studies joined at the hip? I don’t mean the study of Africans by scientists. I mean teachers emitting pro-African propaganda and calling it education. In fact, these student-athletes are better educated by not attending the classes discussed in this article.

  • Since the $12,000 monetary amount is over the $500 threshold in most US states, this one is a felony. Ooops!

    • evilsandmich

      What’s amusing is that’s not a lot of money and its not like the university was expecting these classes to be anything but phoned in. All he had to do was show up and stamp out some bogus grades, so…I guess its not too surprising that he thought that he could get away with doing even less.

      • dogbone

        Regardless of how low you set the bar for minorities, especially blacks, they always under achieve.

  • evilsandmich

    Onre of my more favorite stories is a (black) shuttle driver at the Dallas/Ft Worth airport who told a tale of basketball players completing their four years of college eligibility and when he’d drop them off he’d have to explain the reciept because they couldn’t read it.

  • shmo123

    Those “scholar-athletes” are just too busy to take courses that require any effort. Pretending is so much easier, and in the end, it probably doesn’t matter one wit. They’re either going to make it to the NFL/NBA or they’re not.

  • r j p

    Maybe he can teach “Housing” at Georgia Tech?

    • Brian

      GT still has some standards, thank Thor.

  • nignogger

    Another example of higher learning TNB. If this was not the case , this race of man would of followed the dung beetle, “invention of the wheel, yo know da muhfuggin ding dat goes arund” FYI the WHEEL was introduced into negroid Africa in1500’s, rite after these people ‘inveneted.mthe pyramids.

  • Lee_CPA

    Remember back in the 70’s when during introductions, the TV announcers would show a picture of the player as well as his degree program and GPA? I guess they had to quit because it got too embarassing.

    It’s always interesting to get a game program and look up the players degree program. Usually something like “Sports Management”.

    • SFLBIB

      I remember those days. It has been quite a while since they’ve posted their majors, now that you mention it. While we’re at it, have you noticed that someone must have given the order to involve women in football?

    • capnmorgan5150

      Funny stuff, Lee. I remember watching a game about 20 years ago and noticing all the black players were majoring in “telelcommunications”.

  • newscomments70

    I have seen many corporations use basketball and other black dominated athletics for their advertising, even financial institutions. This type of advertising might work on 12 year olds, but it obviously does not work on us. How could these advertising “experts” be so ignorant? Don’t they realize how much we resent this? Forget amren, they only have to look at unmoderated comments on any media outlet. Outside of a shrinking liberal minority, we resent black athletes, and don’t want anything to do with them.

    • SFLBIB

      “This type of advertising might work on 12 year olds, … How could these advertising “experts” be so

      They are not ignorant; they are smart. Believe it or not, the average intelligence in the U.S. is the eighth grade level [13 year-olds], so commercials are aimed at the center. That is why commercials appear so dumb to the rest of us.

    • ThomasER916

      They’re not dumb, they’re malicious. What you’re unwittingly talking about is the Culture of Critique.

  • Anna Tree

    Or as easy…

  • Lee_CPA

    I would also say that teams in the “Black Belt” region of the south are the worst. I look at my state’s flagship university football team, the University of Ga, and they play 11 blacks on defense and about 8-9 on offense. I quit watching a long, long time ago. Most of the coaches in the Southeastern Conference have bought into the myth that you have to put the “best athlete” on the field. Of course, there’s that pesky little problem of being able to “coach up” someone with an IQ of 80……


    I’d be willing to bet they did too. Recall what the University of Colorado was willing to do to increase diversity? In two words: Ward Churchill. The American Council of Trustees and Alumni did a study that asked, “How many Ward Churchills?”, the ethnic studies professor who referred to the victims of the World Trade Center attacks as “little Eichmanns” who got what they deserved. Its report concluded that little Churchills are everywhere. The topic of this article is just one more.

    • Katherine McChesney

      Ward Churchill = fake Indian. Just like Fauxahontas Warren.

      • SFLBIB

        Refresh my memory. Who is she?


    There was a similar case of a man charging admission to a city park for 20 years, a park that was supposed to be free.


    Good point. “A person who knows nothing is more intelligent than the one filled with lies and misrepresentations.” — Thomas Jefferson

  • LeGrandDerangement

    The syllabus on Pyramid Construction is the toughest.

  • ThomasER916

    I agree. The Marxist belief that “everything is culture” bit them in the butt this time. You cannot lead a revolution with a lazy mind and a class filled with 80 IQ students.

  • odious liberal

    Professor, scholar, teacher, these are terms frequently encountered in cryptonegrology, the study of mythical negro achievements and accomplishments.

  • Randall Ward

    Anyone who has gone to a college that has athletics knows this story. Nothing new. The libs won’t be happy until they destroy the manly sport of football. The pressure has been ramped up a lot lately.
    I could care less about colleges giving away grades, the state run “colleges” are mostly a joke anyway. A few students do learn, the same ones that would have learned even more if left to their own devices or schooled by the private business world.