One day after coach Roy Williams told reporters he was tired of talking about his leading returning scorer, North Carolina athletic director Bubba Cunningham told a group of professors at a faculty retreat that Hairston would play this season, "but not all the games."
Journalism professor Andy Bechtel tweeted Cunningham's response on Thursday. Bechtel, when contacted by ESPN.com, said that Cunningham was the lunchtime speaker at the retreat of journalism faculty. Cunningham spoke about the overall strategic plan and opportunities for broadcasting and public relations students and was posed the question about Hairston.
Hairston averaged 14.6 points last season and was expected to be the focal point of the Tar Heels' offense in 2013-14. He is currently suspended indefinitely after the latest incident, when he was charged with speeding and careless and reckless driving in late July on his way to Charlotte.
Hairston was also arrested on misdemeanor marijuana charges and driving without a license in June, but the charges were dropped after he completed a drug assessment program. A gun was also found outside the vehicle but was not tied to Hairston.
The NCAA is also looking into Hairston's relationship with Haydn "Fats" Thomas, sources told ESPN.com. Hairston was driving a 2013 GMC Yukon rented by Thomas, a convicted felon, at the time of his arrest.
Williams spoke to reporters at a pro-am golf event on Wednesday.
"Not talking about P.J.," Williams told the Raleigh News & Observer. "I've read about it all damn summer, I'm tired of reading about, tired of talking about it. If you want to talk about anything else, I'll talk about anything."
Williams has yet to make a statement on the length of Hairston's suspension, but the Tar Heels will struggle without him in the lineup. Reserve senior guard Leslie McDonald will likely get the first crack to replace Hairston in the starting lineup.