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Former athletic director Paul Dee passed away Saturday night

Sad news regarding former Canes athletic director Paul Dee, who passed away Saturday night at age 65.

Dee was UM's AD for 15 years before stepping down in 2008. Dee, who was about as passionate about the Hurricanes' athletic program as anybody who held the post, recently had been hospitalized for cancer treatment. He also had open-heart surgery in 2008.

When he became athletic director in 1993, he inherited a program facing NCAA violations and succeeded in cleaning it up with coach Butch Davis. Dee then oversaw UM's move from the Big East Conference to the Atlantic Coast Conference and helped the school build an on-campus basketball arena as well as new practice facilities and Cobb Stadium.

Dee was also in charge, though, when Ponzi schemer and rogue booster Nevin Shapiro got involved with players and gave them illegal benefits. The program is still awaiting word from the NCAA on future penalties it may face because of it.