- Associated Press - Thursday, September 2, 2010

North Carolina receiver Greg Little won’t travel to Atlanta for the 18th-ranked Tar Heels’ opener against No. 21 LSU due to the ongoing NCAA investigation at the school, a person with knowledge of the decision said Thursday night.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the NCAA probe at the school is confidential.

Little, a senior, was one of six players to decide in January that he would return to Chapel Hill instead of entering the NFL draft. He is North Carolina’s top receiver, dealing a significant blow to an offense that was already considered a question mark compared to a defense loaded with NFL prospects.

The NCAA has twice visited campus looking into whether Little and senior defensive tackle Marvin Austin _ projected as a possible first-round pick _ received improper benefits from agents. Both players worked with the second team for much of training camp.

The probe expanded to academics last week, though the school has refused to specify how many players could be involved or are in jeopardy of missing the LSU game. Along the way, the NCAA has looked at a cross-country trip involving Austin and former Tar Heel Cam Thomas as well as the friendship between assistant coach John Blake and California-based agent Gary Wichard.

Coach Butch Davis suspended Austin on Wednesday for violating team rules.

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