The News & Observer has a story out today that reviews UNC football coach Butch Davis’ salary and attempts to assess whether the school is getting its money’s worth. Perhaps unsurprisingly, in light of this Saturday’s Meineke Car Care bowl game in Charlotte, and with the season-long increased attendance and revenue, they’ve decided that Davis’ $2 million compensation package has been a worthwhile investment.

No argument here, at the moment. But the breakdown is interesting:

Davis’ contract, renegotiated with a raise after one 4-8 season and signed by the university Board of Trustees this past January, calls for a base salary of $315,000, a retention clause worth $157,000, supplemental income from the Educational Foundation for $1.15 million, $30,000 in expenses and a bowl bonus of $26,249.

Davis’ separate contracts for athletic apparel and television/radio obligations are worth an additional $400,000.

All told, it adds up to $2,078,249.

So, minus the athletic apparel and TV/radio deals, UNC pays Davis $1.6 million. Of that amount, two chunks of it are interesting.

  • First, the “supplemental income,” which is actually 55 percent of his compensation. The N&O might have clarified that the “Educational Foundation” is actually the Rams Club. No shock here, of course. This is the way sports business gets done at institutions of higher learning.
  • Second, the “base salary” of $315,000, which we assume to be paid by the University of North Carolina, or the State of North Carolina, or some other taxpayer-supported entity. We tried looking up Davis’ salary on two different databases maintained by the Charlotte Observer, as part of its utilization of the state’s “sunshine” law, which promotes transparency. Surprisingly, we couldn’t find Davis’ salary on either the NC state employees database or the state university employees database. We were, however, able to find Gov. Mike Easley’s on the former ($139,590) and UNC Chancellor James Moeser’s on the latter ($337,800).

Any idea why we can’t find a salary for Coach Davis on these databases? Let us know, thanks. We’d do some heavy Googling for more answers, but we’re wrapping Christmas presents and preparing to hit the road. Have a great holiday.