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Larry Fedora suspends 4 for UNC opener, including 2 starters


It's a good thing North Carolina is opening its season with a game against an FCS foe like Liberty instead of a big non-conference matchup with a power team.

Less than 24 hours after a damaging Yahoo! Sports report detailed allegations of hazing on the team, Tar Heels head coach Larry Fedora announced the suspensions of four players after practice on Wednesday.

"We have suspended four players for this game for a violation of team policies," Fedora told the media. "We're going to hold all of our guys accountable for the things they do -- on the field and off the field. We also have very high expectations for guys in this program and they didn't meet those expectations."

All four were defensive backs, with Desmond Lawrence and Brian Walker both starters in the secondary for the team. Backups M.J. Stewart and Donnie Miles were also suspended for one game.

Fedora never elaborated on the reason he was suspending the players, referring only to a violation of team policy when asked about the hazing incident.

According to the report on Tuesday, walk-on receiver Jackson Boyer suffered a concussion during an incident at the team's hotel for fall camp in early August. His father told Yahoo! Sports that Boyer was indeed involved in an altercation but refused to provide specifics.

"I don't know if the (investigation) is complete or not. The Office of Student Affairs is handling that because students were involved," Fedora added. "I am not privy to that information actually. That may continue to be going at this time."

North Carolina is already thin on defense heading into the opener with the eligibility of starting defensive lineman Ethan Farmer in question.

It might just be an FCS team on the schedule on Saturday, but given all the issues in Chapel Hill at the moment, game day probably can't come soon enough for the Tar Heels.

You can follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter at @BryanDFischer.

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