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Tar Heel coaching staff put on leave, players transfer

Sylvia Hatchell and her coaching staff are on paid administrative leave while North Carolina investigates the culture of the basketball program.

The North Carolina coaching staff was put on paid administrative leave this week pending an internal review. Per the university, the investigation’s focus will be to “assess the culture of the women’s basketball program and the experience of our student-athletes.”

Hall of Fame head coach Sylvia Hatchell, along with associate head coach Andrew Calder and assistants Sylvia Crawley and Bett Shelby, will wait while the probe continues. Hatchell has stated through her attorney that she will cooperate fully with the investigation.

These developments have precipitated a rash of transfers, not dissimilar to what occurred after the academic scandal in 2015. Key players Stephanie Watts and Jocelyn Jones, along with Destinee Walker (an essential player in her freshman year who sat out the past two years with medical issues) and walk-on Kennedy Boyd, are all intent on leaving the program.

The university has retained Charlotte-based law firm Parker Poe Adams & Bernstein to handle the investigation.

Having made the NCAA tournament this year for the first time since the aforementioned 2015 investigation, the Tar Heels appeared to be trending back towards prominence coming off of this season.

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