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Butch Davis Now Doing Coffee Runs for Greg Schiano

That's what special assistants do right?

Former UNC head coach Butch Davis has been named a special assistant to the head coach for the Tampa Bay Bucaneers. New Bucaneers head coach, Greg Schiano, was an assistant coach under Davis at Miami. This move means Davis will no longer show up in the Blue Zone during UNC football games. However, UNC still owes Davis the rest of the $2.7 million buyout.

As part of his contract with UNC, Davis is entitled to $2.7 million in buyout monies for being let go “without cause” so long as he does not accept another coaching position. His role with Tampa Bay as an “advisor” opens up the opportunity for Davis to continue receiving annual payments of $590,000 every Jan. 15 from 2013-15 as well as gain employment compensation from the Buccaneers, although the details were not immediately known.

If Davis were to take a coaching job anywhere it affects the buyout he receives from UNC. However, since Davis is going to Tampa Bay in an "advisory" role the buyout remains unaffected. Obviously there are some semantics at work here and who can blame Davis for double dipping? While it may "feel" wrong, there is nothing that prohibits it. When Holden Thorp made the decision to fire Butch Davis "without cause" this was bound to be the result. And I am not convinced Thorp deserves too much heat for it either. Firing a head coach "for cause" is almost never done lest there exists some egregious violations directly linked to the coach himself. In UNC's situation, Davis' contract does provide for termination over NCAA violations but various factors make doing so next to impossible.

(b) a violation by COACH, or knowing participation by COACH in a violation, or a violation by the assistant coaches under COACH's supervision of which COACH had reason to know, should have known through the exercise of reasonable diligence in the exercise of his duties under this Agreement, or which COACH condoned, of a major NCAA regulation or bylaw, or of a major ACC regulation or by law, or of a policy of or applicable to UNIVERSITY. For purpose of this Section IX(b), whether or not a violation has occurred shall be reasonably determined in the sole discretion of UNIVERSITY after its review of the relevant facts and circumstances.

At first blush it looks like Davis could be terminated with cause for the NCAA violations since it is reasonable to argue he "had reason to know" what John Blake was doing. The problem for UNC is since the NCAA didn't charge Davis with anything or even mention his name once in the notice of allegations. Since the NCAA didn't bring Davis' name up, UNC is certainly not going to do anything which might expand his perceived role in the scandal. UNC was busy trying to defend itself before the NCAA or at the very least work out as soft a landing as possible. Getting involved in a legal battle with Davis was not going to help that cause not to mention it opens up a whole host of things to discovery. If the Michael McAdoo lawsuit taught us anything it is that entering NCAA issues into the public record can create an endless number of unintended consequences. It was much easier to simply back the Brinks truck up to Davis' house and hope at some point he goes away, which apparently he now has.

It is not an ideal solution but it was the best available option at the time. It is important to remember there is no good here, just making the best out of a crappy situation.