According to reports, 13 University of North Carolina football players have been suspended for reselling their player edition sneakers.
Athletes who attend either the University of Oregon or the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill receive player-exclusive Jordan Brand and Nike gear. This is due to Michael Jordan having played college basketball at UNC and Nike founder Phil Knight’s strong connection to the U of O in Eugene, Oregon.
Naturally, these sneakers, most often Air Jordans, fetch a lot of money on the resell market due to their rarity. A lot of collectors, and even professional athletes such as NBA player P.J. Tucker, covet these kicks because of how hard they are to get. A quick search on StadiumGoods shows a University of Oregon Air Jordan III listed for over $6,000, while Flight Club has a “UNC” AJIII for $12,000.
Now, 13 UNC football players were caught selling their sneakers, including quarterback Chazz Surratt, who started seven games for UNC last season. The football players were subsequently suspended.
Due to the number of players affected, the NCAA approved the University’s request to stagger the suspensions. The suspensions range from one game to four games.
Defensive End Malik Carney spoke on the incident at a press conference on Monday, saying, “It was just a wrong mistake. It was something that it just happened. I wasn’t thinking about it and I just made a wrong decision.”
To play for an NCAA school athletes have to maintain their amateur status, which means they can’t earn money for their on-court play, their likeness, and any gifts they are given — which includes player edition sneakers.
What do you think of the decision to suspend the players? Should they be able to resell their own shoes? Let us know in the comments.
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