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Roy Williams In "Shock" And "Disbelief" Over Rashad McCants' Allegations

North Carolina coach Roy Williams already responded to former Tar Heels guard/forward Rashad McCants' claims that Williams was aware of a bevy of academic integrity issues while McCants was in Chapel Hill. Williams released an official statement right after McCants' allegations came out, saying he "strongly disagreed" with what McCants said.

However, Williams didn't think that was enough, as the UNC head coach again responded to McCants in a 35 minute interview with ESPN's Jay Bilas, claiming that he was in "shock" and "disbelief" when he heard what McCants alleged. Eleven former North Carolina basketball players attended the interview in a show of support for Williams.

"Every one of those players that are sitting over there and every player I've had make me feel like they did their work, and we emphasize that and we push them towards that all the time," Williams said.

Several former players who attended the interview but did not wish to speak on camera echoed Williams' points and vehemently disagreed with McCants' allegations and descriptions of being an athlete at UNC.

Williams did not directly answer a question about McCants' allegation that he believed Williams knew "100 percent" about the sham or paper-class system at UNC. Those classes, in the African-American studies program and popular with athletes, did not require students to attend class but did require one term paper to be submitted by semester's end.

"First of all, how does anybody know what somebody else believes, but I know what I believe," Williams said, before discussing his understanding of what the so-called paper classes were. "I thought that meant that a class was on paper but it didn't really exist, and then come to find out people are using that terminology 'paper classes' to signify independent study courses that you do papers. ... I've been told by people that some of those are really, really good. It shows a lot of discipline because you're self-directed. If my players took independent study courses that were offered by this university for a reason that the university thought they were valuable, my players, if they took those courses, did the work, and I'm proud of that part of it."

Williams also responded to claims that he helped McCants replace two classes that McCants was failing with easier classes in UNC's controversial African-American Studies program in an attempt to keep McCants academically eligible.

Williams adamantly denied Saturday that he ever discussed swapping any classes with McCants; further, he said he did not recall such a meeting "at all."

"I don't have any idea what swapping out would be," Williams said. "That's not in my vocabulary. You can't take a course and get another one thrown out at the college level. All of your courses count. So I know I would not have that kind of conversation. I don't know what swapping out means, and I have never suggested that anybody take any course."

The full interview isn't online yet, and there's no word on when it will be aired, but you can check out a clip of the interview here.