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October 4, 2011
In his first full-blown interview since being fired as head coach at North Carolina, Butch Davis spoke with ESPNU's Jesse Palmer on the program Palmer and Pollack, which was televised Monday.
Davis, who will be an analyst on ESPNU this fall, spoke about the Allegations still hovering over UNC, and the situation that resulted in his firing.
The former Tar Heel coach said that he doesn't believe his firing by UNC Chancellor Holden Thorp will have any bearing on the NCAA's decision whether or not to add to the penalties already self-imposed by the University.
"I actually don't think it (my firing) will have any (impact on the) decision. As you know, I was not named in any of the (NCAA) Allegations," said Davis.
"Subsequently, they're going to go in front of the Infractions Committee, and it's solely based upon the nine infractions that were self-reported."
Palmer, the former Florida and New York Giants quarterback, then asked Davis what he would have done differently if he could go back.
"Certainly hindsight is 20-20. There's a lot of things Monday Morning Quarterbacking---things you'd like to do differently," said Davis. "I've always taken a great deal of pride in running an ethical program at the University of Miami and at North Carolina, emphasizing great talent, great players, but also education and academics."
"One of the things certainly you'd like to do again is maybe a little bit stronger background checks on some of the individuals that maybe were involved in some of the allegations, and maybe some of those might have been more revealing at that particular time," Davis continued.
"It's easy to go back and second-guess some of those decisions."
When asked about the remarkably strange timing of his termination---just over a week before training camp---Davis deferred to the man who was ultimately responsible for firing him.
"That's a difficult question to answer (regarding the timing). I think the only individual who could certainly answer that question would be the Chancellor," said Davis.
"I went to Pinehurst with the idea of doing the (ACC) Media Day and getting ready for the season, and came home the next day and was relieved of the coaching duties."
"Certainly he (Thorp) would be the only individual that could answer that question," Davis added.
Davis isn't sure whether the NCAA will decide to add to the penalties that UNC has self-imposed, which includes vacating all wins in 2008 and 2009, a reduction of 10 scholarships over three years, and a two-year probation period.
"It's a little bit like reading tea leaves. There's so many aspects of it. How you conduct the investigation, how cooperative the school was during the course of that. Obviously they've self-imposed some things," said Davis.
"They've got to defend their position on a couple of the allegations. So it certainly could go in any particular direction."
Davis, who is going to be a regular on ESPNU throughout football season, seemed all too happy to get into an in-depth discussion on the Atlantic Coast Conference.
He spoke about several teams in the league, including Clemson.
When the program's co-host, former Georgia signal-caller David Pollack, mentioned how he didn't want to speak about the negative things and 'Let's talk about the football stuff,' Davis replied, 'Absolutely.'
Click on the link below to watch the video of Coach Davis's interview with Palmer:
BUTCH DAVIS SPEAKS