UNC Extends Davis' Contract

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- The University of North Carolina has agreed in principle to a 1-year contract extension and a raise of $291,000 for head football coach Butch Davis, pending approval of the University Board of Trustees next week.

"My family and I felt like Chapel Hill was the right place last year and are even more convinced after being here for one season," Butch Davis said. "I'm appreciative of the show of support from Dick Baddour, the administration, Chancellor Moeser and the Board of Trustees. I'm confident we will continue to make progress in all phases of the football program. Tammy, Drew and I look forward to a long and successful career at the University of North Carolina. This should put to rest any speculation of where I'll be coaching in the future."

Davis denied that any other programs -- including his alma mater Arkansas -- had contacted him about any possible job openings in a Wednesday afternoon teleconference with reporters.

Few coaches get a contract extension and a raise in the midst of a 3-8 season, but Davis emphasized that it's difficult the gauge the progress of a rebuilding effort in terms of wins and losses.

"We're very disappointed that we didn't win more football games so far this season, but I think the strides that have been made over the last 12 months have been enormous," Davis said. "Just by the competitive nature of the games, by the atmosphere that's been created. It's a great atmosphere to come to Kenan on Saturday - we've had five consecutive sellouts, season tickets sales were extremely high at the beginning of the season, we had a great recruiting class and we're in the midst of having another fine recruiting class. I think all of the momentum is certainly moving in the right direction."

Athletic Director Dick Baddour indicated that he recognized the progress that Davis and his coaching staff have made over the past year.

"Progress has been demonstrated by the hard work of the players on and off the field, the competitive games Carolina has played against one of the nation's most difficult schedules, the excitement each week at Kenan Stadium and the quality of the student-athletes he and his staff are recruiting," Baddour said.

"We approached Coach Davis about the possibility of extending and enhancing his contract several weeks ago. We recognize that we have one of the nation's best coaches and we wanted to ensure the stability of the program. We were aggressive in pursuing Coach Davis last year before the season ended and we wanted to be ahead of the curve this year."

Davis said the recent speculation about his job status and a possible contract extension has not proven to be detrimental to his program.

"It was totally no distraction whatsoever," Davis said. "We focused every single week on each individual game. I think when two people really, truly want something, and they both want the same thing, it's very easy.

"I wanted to be here and Tammy and I wanted to be here. We made that decision a year ago, that Chapel Hill is our home. I am so thrilled to be the head coach of the University of North Carolina and I want to be here for a long time."

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