Hairston headed to D-League, taking online course at UNC
Posted January 10
Chapel Hill, N.C. — After losing his collegiate eligibility and withdrawing from the University of North Carolina as a full-time student, guard PJ Hairston will head to the NBA Developmental League, he confirmed in a statement Friday.
The statement reads, “I am pursing an opportunity to play basketball in the NBA’s Developmental League, and submitted my paperwork this afternoon.”
Hairston also indicated that he has enrolled in an online course at UNC and is, “excited to continue to pursue my degree at UNC while also pursing my dream of becoming a professional basketball player.”
Hairston mentioned he has plans to follow through in obtaining a communications degree and turned in his first online assignment Thursday.
NBA D-League teams are 15-to-19 games into a 50-game schedule but are capable of acquiring players through waivers at this juncture of the season. After completing the year, the 6-foot-5 Hairston will be eligible for the NBA Draft in June.
“I’ve spent the past couple of weeks consulting with my family about what’s best for me, my development and my future," Hairston said to open his statement.
It was announced Dec. 20 that UNC would not to reinstate Hairston following multiple off-the-court issues, including a June 5 traffic stop where marijuana and a gun were recovered in and near a car that was rented out by a convicted felon. Hairston was arrested and charged with misdemeanor marijuana possession and driving without a license but the charges were dismissed on July 22 after Hairston showed proof that he had a driver's license and had completed a drug assessment program.
"Unfortunately, P.J. made a number of mistakes that placed his eligibility at risk, and the university's joint review with the NCAA made it clear that seeking reinstatement for P.J. would not be possible," director of athletics Bubba Cunningham said in a statement on Dec. 20. "The university thanks him for his contributions to Carolina basketball."
Hairston, a Greensboro native, averaged a team-high 14.6 points per game for the Tar Heels a year ago. In the course of his 71-game Carolina career, he scored 707 points and made 127 three-pointers.