Tutor on UNC decision: 'Disgraceful'

Updated: October 7, 2013, 3:04 PM ET
By Eamonn Brennan | ESPN.com

A longtime North Carolina athletics tutor left his job Friday, and he didn't go quietly.

[+] EnlargeP.J. Hairston
Lance King/Getty ImagesAn athletic academic tutor at North Carolina has resigned, citing Roy Williams' decision to keep P.J. Hairston on the team after several offseason incidents, including a June arrest for misdemeanor marijuana possession and driving without a license.

Jack Halperin, who worked with UNC athletes for 23 years, announced his departure in a letter of protest directed at North Carolina basketball coach Roy Williams. The letter, published in the Daily Tar Heel, calls Williams' decision not to dismiss star guard P.J. Hairston this summer "disgraceful."

"Roy, after 23 years as an academic tutor, and after going through the devastating football scandal, I am resigning in protest of your disgraceful decision to allow P.J. Hairston to remain on the team," Halperin's letter read. 'If I were arrested driving with no license, illegal drugs and a gun in a felon's car, my employment at this university would end immediately. Hairston's [Daily Tar Heel] headline quote was, 'I will play this season.' Since when does the criminal decide his fate?"

On June 5, Hairston was pulled over in a rented GMC Yukon licensed to convicted felon Hadyn "Fats" Thomas and was charged for misdemeanor marijuana possession and driving without a license. A gun was found at the scene, although it was not tied to Hairston. The charges were dropped after Hairston completed a drug assessment program.

In July, Hairston received a speeding ticket that included an additional charge of careless and reckless driving.

Williams has indefinitely suspended Hairston, who has been practicing with the team since September. The Tar Heels coach has provided no timetable for a return other than saying there was "no question" that Hairston, who averaged a team-high 14.6 points per game last season, would play this season.

C.L. Brown of ESPN.com contributed to this report.

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