First up, UNC announced on Wednesday that Devon Ramsay's NCAA appeal would postponed while they work to improve their case.
UNC has asked the NCAA to postpone Thursday's appeal hearing for Tar Heels fullback Devon Ramsay, who was ruled permanently ineligible by the NCAA earlier this fall.
In a statement issued by the university's sports information office this afternoon, North Carolina athletic director Dick Baddour said, "We decided it was in his best interest to allow more time to develop the case in support of him. We do not know the date of his rescheduled appeal at this time."
The only reason I can think UNC decided to postpone this is they picked up on something during Michael McAdoo's appeal on Tuesday which led them to approach Ramsay's case differently. That is pure speculation on my part but either McAdoo's appeal revealed something or UNC obtained new information. No word on which this will be rescheduled and also no indication on what kind of decision, if any, has been made about McAdoo.
The N&O is reporting UNC hired an outside firm to assist them with the daunting task of protecting the school's public image during the course of the NCAA investigation into Tar Heel football. The communications firm of Hill & Knowlton tasked consultant Michael Kontos with aiding UNC which included the now infamous three headed monster press conference on August 26th. The fact UNC solicited external assistance on the PR front should come as a shock to no one. Well no one whose opinion actually matters to sane people. Image management in an age of instant news and free flowing opinion is incredibly complicated. I am neither surprised nor do I care UNC hired a firm to help them with PR. The part of it that bugs me is the fact UNC spent a little over $14,000 for PR help and I find it extremely difficult to not say, "Well, a fat lot of good it did!"
Speaking of communications, it seems Art Chansky has been fired from his position at Tar Heel Sports Properties over an email he sent to Chancellor Holden Thorp concerning a plan to supplant Butch Davis. Chansky, who has authored several books on UNC basketball including Light Blue Reign, advocated searching for a new head coach while appearing to support Davis. Via WCHL:
In the email, Chansky asks Thorp to keep their communication private and confidential. But the email is just one of many the university has had to release in response to a public records request by local media.
Chansky says in the email that he’s sick over how the scandal has tainted the reputation of the school. He goes on to say that most of the time, "that stain cannot be erased without a complete change of command."
In the two months since the email was written, Chancellor Thorp has continued to support Butch Davis in public and has reiterated multiple times that he will be the head coach going forward and that there are no plans to replace him.
There are two ways to look at what Chansky was doing with his email to Thorp. On one hand, he may have been making suggestions based on the possibility of Davis being dismissed or resigning. Such a possibility has been (and in my opinion still is) a valid concern. Based on quotes from the email highlighted by WCHL, I do not think that was the case. Chansky was concerned with UNC's reputation being stained by the football scandal and thought the best way to undo that damage was complete turnover in the football office. From what I have seen, Chansky is a part of the basketball-centric, old guard and was probably not too fond of Butch Davis in the first place. That is more my opinion based on what I have seen but I would not be shocked to find Chansky and BobLee Swagger in like mind where Davis is concerned.
I would not read too much into Chansky's dismissal as far as support for Butch Davis goes. Chansky emailing the chancellor to not only say Davis should go but lay out a plan to make it happen put the longtime author at serious odds with his employer. In the end it would difficult for THSP to keep an employee who openly plotted to have a coach removed. Which is too bad considering Chansky's contributions.
At any rate, I don't think Chansky's scalp was the one the media had in mind when they launched this fishing expedition into UNC's files.