Mack Brown goes scorched earth on NCAA over Tez Walker ruling
Mack Brown completely tore the NCAA to shreds in a statement issued Thursday after news came down the NCAA had denied an appeal that would have made UNC wideout Tez Walker eligible to play this season.
In the statement, Brown said the NCAA had failed Walker and his family. He said he has never been more disappointed in an individual, a group of individuals, or an institution than he currently is in the NCAA. And he said he has lost all faith in the organization’s ability to govern the sport of college football. Brown ended his statement with an all-caps message to the NCAA: “SHAME ON YOU!”
The full statement is below:
We’re absolutely crushed to learn that Tez Walker’s eligibility has been denied for this season and he won’t be able to play. I don’t know that I’ve ever been more disappointed in a person, a group of people, or an institution than I am with the NCAA right now. It’s clear that the NCAA is about process and it couldn’t care less about the young people it’s supposed to be supporting. Plain and simple, the NCAA has failed Tez and his family and I’ve lost all faith in its ability to lead and govern our sport. They’ve messed so many things up as it relates to college football, and now their failures have negatively impacted the life of one of our own. Just imagine what it is like for Te to be so excited to come home and have a chance to fulfill his childhood dream of playing for North Carolina in front of all of his family and friends, only to have it taken away despite doing nothing wrong. I can’t begin to understand how this has happened. The decision makers at the NCAA and on the committee should be ashamed of themselves for doing this to a young man. As has been clearly documented, Tez should be eligible for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the mental health issues he’s faced during his time in college. And with this decision, the NCAA has placed an unnecessary burden on him. He’s had a rough go of it and this will surely only make it worse. How dare they ever speak about mental health and student-athlete welfare again. We’ve got complete rosters overhauled through the transfer portal, players playing in their 8th year of college, players playing at their fourth school, and the list goes on. Yet, Tez Walker, who has only played football at one school, isn’t eligible. It makes no sense and it never will.
Moving forward, our Carolina family is strong and we need to wrap our arms around Tez, lift him up, and make sure we continue to do all we can to support him. He’s continued to work, on the field and off, and remained an amazing member of our program throughout this ordeal. I know that will continue to happen because that’s the kind of person he is. Despite this setback, Tez’s future remains bright and we’ll continue to do everything we can to help him fulfill all of his dreams.
Shame on you, NCAA. SHAME ON YOU!
The junior from Charlotte had been in limbo since August 8, when the NCAA – as part of a crackdown on 2-time transfers – rescinded the waiver it originally granted him to play this season.
Earlier this week, Brown told reporters that Walker could take legal action against the NCAA over the decision but that he hoped the NCAA would “do what’s right.”
Following UNC’s 31-17 win over South Carolina to open the season, quarterback Drake Maye showed up to his postgame media availability wearing Walker’s jersey.