As someone who has frequently written in support of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and its athletic programs, I never thought I'd be writing a letter like this. But the words and actions of Makhtar Ndiaye both during and after the NCAA semifinal game with Utah have left me bitterly disappointed, angry and embarrassed. The pride that so many of us have taken in what is arguably the country's cleanest, most respected college athletic program has been substantially tarnished.
Although nothing has been said beyond Ndiaye's somewhat less than humble apology, I hope university officials are evaluating the available options for punishment. As he's a senior, that punishment obviously won't involve future participation in athletics. But something significant needs to be done.On behalf, I would hope, of all Tar Heels everywhere, I offer my most sincere apologies to Britton Johnsen, his teammates, the coaches, fans, the University of Utah community and your townspeople for what has happened. I hope you all know enough about the University of North Carolina and its athletic programs to agree that the regrettable actions of one player are not reflective of this outstanding university and athletic program of which we're otherwise extremely proud. We look forward to the next opportunity to personally demonstrate that to you.
Chapel Hill, N.C.