I don't think I've ever read any of Art Chansky's books. I know I have a copy of The Dean's List: a Celebration of Tar Heel Basketball and Dean Smith, and I've flipped through it, but it's more of a coffee table book to be flipped through; I've never read it cover to cover. As for his other books, well, most of them always struck me as hagiographies with overly long subtitles. So I never picked them up, despite his position as basically the court historian for Carolina basketball. But I never thought ill of him, either.
Yesterday, Chansky was fired by Tar Heel Sports Properties after an e-mail he sent Holden Thorp in October surfaced as part of the FOIA request of communications involving the UNC football team. Chansky basically lobbied for UNC alums Eddie Fogler and Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany to lead a coaching search to replace Butch Davis, should such a thing be required.
Such a thing, of course, was not required, and now Chansky is unemployed and I don't really know what to think. The coaching search offer itself is both presumptuous and bizarre; circumventing the athletic director to go straight to a new chancellor to try to get your friends jobs is a pretty slimy thing. (Also, Fogler's coaching search experience appears to be entirely basketball related.) You can't help but read into Chansky's sales pitch for Fogler an implicit criticism of the consultant Baddour hired for the last coaching search, Chuck Neinas.
But as disturbing as I found the e-mail, the firing is pretty dodgy as well. Chansky has the incredibly uninformative title of Associate General Manager and Account Executive at THSP; I have absolutely no idea what he does outside of his book writing gigs. Having it publicized that he was coming out against the head football coach and the athletic director is going to make doing said job much tougher. One assumes the university had no part in this, but they're so intertwined it doesn't look good. No one's behaving really well here.
Also, the phrase "50-year reputation" rather chaps me with its specificity. That's a personal thing though.