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Mark Emmert explains differences between Syracuse, UNC cases

When the NCAA levied harsh sanctions against Syracuse's athletic department early last month, attention among many ACC fans immediately turned to one of the league's bedrocks: North Carolina.

The NCAA last summer reopened its investigation into the UNC academic scandal, two years after sanctioning the Tar Heels football program with a postseason ban and scholarship losses after finding impermissible benefits and academic fraud under then-coach Butch Davis.

But the cases might not be all that similar, according to NCAA president Mark Emmert. Addressing reporters Thursday in New York as part of the APSE commissioners' meetings, Emmert said the "academic issues at Syracuse were right in the NCAA's wheelhouse," according to Syracuse.com's Chris Carlson, who was on the scene.

Emmert, per Carlson, said that the Syracuse situation was not a case of fake courses so much as it was Orange athletic officials being complicit in helping athletes cheat.

Emmert also addressed Syracuse's upcoming appeal.

Current UNC football coach Larry Fedora was asked about his program's situation Wednesday during the ACC football coaches' teleconference, and he said he has not received a timetable on when the investigation might be completed.

"To be honest with you, all we do is try to tell kids that we're at the mercy of the NCAA," Fedora said. "Whenever it happens, it happens. We don't have a timeline. No one has given us any information.

"I feel pretty confident in what -- I know I feel confident in what we're doing since we've been here, so right now we're just -- we'll just have to wait and see what they say."