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Report: UNC boosters considering lawsuit

Posted on: August 8, 2011 2:29 pm
Edited on: August 8, 2011 3:39 pm
Posted by Chip Patterson

UPDATE: Robbi Pickeral, who authored the initial News and Observer report, says that UNC has received the information request from the lawyers of the football boosters.  School still has no official comment. 

Things got even crazier on Monday in the ongoing drama that has become the North Carolina football program. According to a local report, a group of North Carolina football boosters who agreed to help fund a recent Kenan Stadium expansion are exploring possible legal action against chancellor Holden Thorp.

The identities of the boosters involved has not been made public, but one of the attorneys representing the group told the Raleigh News and Observer he plans to file a public information request asking for all correspondence between the Chancellor and other school officials.

Don Brown, of Charlotte, N.C., is one of five lawyers (all UNC graduates) that have taken the case pro bono. For the first time in the stadium's 84 year history, both end zones are now bowled in thanks to the construction of the "Carolina Student-Athlete Center for Excellence." The new service building for the athletic department also brought 2,980 new seats, a club level, and suites that can be priced at $50,000 per year. There have been reports that donors have asked for refunds since Butch Davis' dismissal, which were denied.

"I can tell you, everybody that we represent is furious about the timing of Butch Davis' firing," Brown told the News and Observer in a phone interview. "They feel like their investment was based on Butch Davis being the head coach…and the public reassurances over the past year that he would remain the coach…They want answers."

A UNC spokesman said that as of 11:30 a.m. on Monday the school had received no FOIA request, and there is no official comment on the issue.

The group of enraged boosters is said to be of different contribution levels, and it is not clear exactly what they hope to gain from pursuing legal action. Brown emphasized in his interview with the News and Observer that they are only "seeking information" right now. One recent precedent was Connecticut booster Robert Burtonwho asked for his $3 million back from the school and requested to have his name taken off the Burton Family Football Complex. After causing quite a public stir, Burton and the school were eventually back on good terms and no drastic action was taken. The legalities of donations (particularly ones earmarked for a project like the Blue Zone) could get particularly hairy and difficult to reclaim in a court of law. It could be argued that this is a case of upset boosters, who simply do not know another way to fire back at an administration which they feel has wronged them.

Since: Mar 20, 2007
Posted on: August 8, 2011 5:16 pm

Report: UNC boosters considering lawsuit

And here we have yet another example of boosters thinking they have more authority than the school's actual president - it is very easy to see why cheating was/is so permissible at North Carolina.  It appears that the boosters are insisting upon cheating.

Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: August 8, 2011 5:09 pm

Report: UNC boosters considering lawsuit

One would think that the UNC administrators would have known enough to not fire Mr. Davis until the construction has finished...and only if his team has a down year. There is a reason why colleges and universities court alumni....they have money and will do anything to support the school. But of course, if you do something stupid like lie or mislead them then at the very least they should get their money back.

For example, I had donated $100 million to help fund the construction of a new soccer stadium with the understanding that it was done because I liked the job that the coach was doing and I didn't want him to leave for another college simply because his players played in an outdated building.

Shortly, after receiving my e transfer from my bank (after all who really writes a $100 million check these days?) the school fires the soccer coach and tells me "thanks for the money, but we are not keeping the soccer coach. We are pocketing the money and hiring a less experienced coach." They also say no "take-backs" and I say "did you not forget that I'm one of your most famous alumni and I happen to be a very good lawyer".

This can only end bad for UNC. I see the courts ruling in favor for the plaintiffs and see that Davis gets his job restored and the administrators responsible for this mess to be banned from working at the university level.   

Since: Feb 7, 2008
Posted on: August 8, 2011 5:07 pm

Report: UNC boosters considering lawsuit

Look at all of "experts"  More than half of you didn't attend the school you root for.  The other half of you are to cheap to make donations to "your" school. 

If you idiots would think things through, you would see these people are angry that they were decieved by Holden Thorp.  AFTER everybody made their donation, bought season tickets and everything else, they fired him.  God, why is that so difficult to understand?

What is so hard to understand about how writing a check to a school doesn't give you the right to decide the fate of its personnel, idiot?

Since: Aug 8, 2011
Posted on: August 8, 2011 5:02 pm

Report: UNC boosters considering lawsuit

Get your facts straight before you speak!  John Edwards went to North Carolina State. Only went to UNC for his law degree. Only associated with UNC because he wanted to be seen associating with a winner. He was actually a wolf in sheep's clothing.

Since: Aug 5, 2011
Posted on: August 8, 2011 4:45 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Oct 16, 2007
Posted on: August 8, 2011 4:18 pm

Report: UNC boosters considering lawsuit

A proud moment for UNC alumni everywhere....


Since: Dec 28, 2006
Posted on: August 8, 2011 4:17 pm

Report: UNC boosters considering lawsuit

I don't know that this is all bad.  Very interesting.  I have been amazed at how some college administrations get away with little or no accountability in dismissing coaches.  Probably won't get too far with this, but it is interesting.

Since: Mar 20, 2009
Posted on: August 8, 2011 4:11 pm

Report: UNC boosters considering lawsuit

Anyone who believes that Butch Davis did not know what John Blake was doing knows nothing about their very long relationship.  Butch has known Blake since Blake was in high school.  Give me a break ...

Davis should have been fired at the end of last season and a new coach in place.  The mistake was the timing of the firing, not the firing itself.

Since: Nov 17, 2009
Posted on: August 8, 2011 4:04 pm

Report: UNC boosters considering lawsuit

i say go freaking get the chancellor. he's a moron and used butch davis. not only a really really really dumb move, but at the absolute worst possible time.  all of the donors should get there money back because they were supporting butch davis. as the rest of the tarheels were.  the dude does the same thing every other coach does or at least try to do and gets fired for it.  you know everybody at the school knew what was going on and just pushed it under the rug and one guy takes all the heat. what a bunch of sisssies!!!

Since: Nov 17, 2009
Posted on: August 8, 2011 3:59 pm

Report: UNC boosters considering lawsuit

what in the heck are you talking about dude? do you even know?

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