Baddour and Davis No Commenting; I Smell A Contract Extension

The absolute easiest way to defuse any coaching rumors concerning your head football coach is to negotiate a new contract. This apparently what UNC has going on, not because of any confirmation but because no one is willing to comment on it.

From ACC Now:

“I think Dick [Baddour] summed it up to answer that question best yesterday: Any time the University’s got anything going on, it’s just pretty much the University’s policy to not talk about it,” Davis said. “And now all I’m focused on is trying to get this football team to bounce back emotionally and get ready to play as well as we can against Duke.”

Davis signed a seven year contract, worth about $1.86 million annually, last November, and he would be forced to pay $2 million if he left after this season to coach at another school after one season. Still, his name has been linked to Arkansas, his alma mater; Davis has said he plans to be at UNC next season.

Baddour, UNC’s athletics director, said Saturday it is institutional policy not to comment on contracts, except for what is in the current one.

Based on how this has worked in the past a refusal to comment about something that may or may not be happening usually means that something is probably happening. And these guys know that otherwise they would simply deny the report and move on. The smart PR move is to make sure people know a contract renegotiation is happening without actually saying it as a sort of preemptive strike against any suitors who may come calling. It also makes perfect sense they would be delving into this now and it would not surprise me in the least if they announced something early next week following the Duke game.

Let me also address what any contract extension/renegotiation actually means. It does not mean Davis is being rewarded for a 3-4 win season or for any improvement in the team. This is a factor in the process, but the main impetus behind a potential new contract is to account for an obvious change in the market value of your coach due in part to external pressures created by increased demand for his services. In other words when Davis was hired, UNC was the only team on the radar and given the demand for Davis was low they paid him commiserate to reality of the market at that time. A year later the market reality has changed and Davis is being linked all over the place to go to more traditional football programs which means his market value has substantially changed. The choice UNC has is they can either attempt to address this change and pony up the dough or they can ignore it and watch Davis walk. I agree with 850’s Adam Gold in his saying coaches do not like to look bad(thus Davis not wanting to leave after one year) but I think even above that they do not like to be disrespected. If UNC fails to acknowledge the change in Davis’ value and meet it then they basically hand Davis an out to leave after one year. And in terms of the bigger picture it not only “immunizes” Davis from coaching rumors in this present year but I think such an extension would be good for at least three years.

At any rate I think something is afoot and if they do get something hammered out I think they will make it public after the Duke game and effectively end any pursuit of Davis by other schools.

5 Responses to Baddour and Davis No Commenting; I Smell A Contract Extension

  1. Don Worley says:

    Coach Davis deserves a new contract for what he has done on the Hill. This was the best losing season in my 50 years of following Carolina. He has shown more as a coach than anyone, even Mack Brown or Jim Tatum.

    We should not be out bid for our coach.

  2. Big Apple Heel says:

    I think Davis has lived up to, and in my estimation exceeded, expectations so far. And I don’t think there are any stormclouds on the horizon that indicate the program isn’t headed up. I’ve had a lot of fun watching this team.

    But at least in principle, I’m against an extension. It’s an unfair comparison in many ways, but look at Notre Dame’s giving Charlie Weiss a 10-year deal after one promising year. Yes, Davis is a proven college coach while Weiss isn’t, just to point out one apples-to-oranges fault in that argument, but the bottom line is that we really don’t know how Davis will pan out.

    If for whatever reason UNC needed to let Davis go 3-4 years from now with 5 or 6 years left on a contract, there’s a lot of liability there. Of course, Davis failing at UNC might be enough by itself to relegate UNC football to mediocrity for the foreseeable future.

    With state of the coaching arms race being what it is, so be it if an extension is really needed. But I hope no one is over-eager to go that route.

    Also, I’m pretty sure Joe Dailey is a senior, but if not, any new contract should stipulate that he is not allowed to throw the football under any circumstances. I’m still not over that play call.

  3. Tar Heel Fan says:

    First of all, I think he is proven on the college level based on what happened at Miami whereas Weis had zero college experience and one year was certainly not enough time to know what he could do.

    Secondly, I think the reason an extension is being discussed is because Davis’ market value has changed not so much based on the team’s performance but based on external market pressures. This is no different than any person in the private sector working for Company A when Company B comes along and offers more money to do the same job and then Company A sweetens the current salary package to keep the person there.

    In the current CFB climate, if UNC has designs on being a player they will have to step up and acknowledge the interest in Davis by showing him some monetary love. I think this has to happen to deal with the interest this season and it should serve to ward off interest for 2-3 more years if they get it done. In principle, I don’t like the idea either and it would be nice if these coaches would sign a contract and abide by for at least a few years but this is not the state of things now so for UNC they must either bring the contract closer to his perceived market value or watch him walk.

  4. Andrew says:

    UNC would be wise to go through with a phat contract extension for Davis. He’s definitely got the ability to raise the level of this program tenfold.

  5. […] More from The Hog Blogger Tar Heel Fan ACC Now Arkansas, Butch Davis, College Football, Football, Houston Nutt North Carolina (0) […]

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