Miykael Faulcon on himself, P.J. Hairston: 'We're not bad kids'

Jul. 20, 2013 @ 09:50 PM

On the court, Miykael Faulcon is the same player he’s always been. Off the court is where he’s changed.

“I have to watch my every move,” Faulcon said. “Be smarter about everything.”

Faulcon and fellow Durham resident Carlos Sanford were in the car when North Carolina star P.J. Hairston was pulled over at a license check last month in Durham. All three were arrested and charged with misdemeanor possession of marijuana.

Since the arrest, Hairston — and his UNC teammates — have chosen not to play in the S.J.G. Greater NC Pro-Am this summer. But Faulcon and Sanford are regulars during the games at Durham School of the Arts.

“I just deal with it,” Faulcon said after a win Thursday. “That (incident) could have happened to anybody. When I’m on the court, I don’t think about nothing. I use the game of basketball to let my mind just be free.”

Faulcon acknowledged that the circumstances were different for Hairston.

“P.J. is a lot different from me and Carlos,” Faulcon said. “He’s in a different position than we are. He’s a future NBA prospect, a lottery pick for next year’s draft, so of course a lot of people want to know what’s going on, cameras — he just doesn’t want to deal with it right now.”

While Hairston led the Tar Heels in scoring in 2012-13, Faulcon made the CIAA all-rookie team as a freshman at Elizabeth City State, averaging 6.1 points in 13.0 minutes and shooting 35.4 percent from 3-point range.

Faulcon, who played high school ball at Hillside, wouldn’t address the circumstances surrounding his arrest, but said he hopes to use that night to help him in the future.

“I’m using this as a learning experience, honestly,” Faulcon said. “Because when the college basketball season gets here, I’m going to have to deal with adversity at times, so I’m just using this as pretty much pre-game for the season.

“Basketball is a game where you never know what can happen. I just use it as a learning experience.”

Sanford, who played for Riverside High and has no more college eligibility, declined to comment Thursday.

Both Faulcon and Hairston could also face NCAA penalties. Hairston has been stopped by police twice while driving rental cars linked to Durham felon Haydn “Fats” Thomas, while Thomas told USA Today that he let Faulcon borrow his car on the night of the arrests. If Thomas gave them cars because they were athletes, it would be an NCAA violation.

ECSU sports information director April Emory said that the school is waiting for Faulcon’s legal issues to be resolved before making any decisions on his status. UNC coach Roy Williams also said he will wait “until the process is complete” before deciding on Hairston’s punishment. The players are scheduled to be in court on Aug. 6.

But Faulcon said he didn’t think the incident would affect his future, or Hairston’s.

“That’s my homeboy,” Faulcon said. “We love the game of basketball, that’s what we do. We’re not bad kids or anything. Just people trying to work on our game and get better at the game of basketball.”