North Carolina's decision to fire Butch Davis as its head football coach isn't the end of the story, not by a longshot. Now comes all of the questions, replacements and other details, including figuring out how much all of this is going to cost the University.
There's the obvious costs first. Davis is still owed $2.7 million in a contract buyout. Chancellor Holden Thorp said "I've reached the conclusion that even though this is a terrible time, the athletics program will pay whatever it needs to pay to make the separation happen." Just in case you were wondering how fired up Thorp was, there you go.
But then there's the other cost involved. Namely, the costs of building The Blue Zone.
The Blue Zone is a $70 million project that includes a student-athlete center and 3,000 new, stadium seats for the upper-echelon of UNC football fans. The project had been funded mainly by a booster club, but that club was doing so based on the success of Butch Davis and his revamped Tar Heels football program. Now, many boosters are pulling out of the club and taking their valuable money with them.
Millions remain to be paid on the Blue Zone project. The people willing to pony up for it are dwindling. And Butch Davis doesn't have to worry about it anymore. UNC, however, does.
For more on the North Carolina football situation, keep an eye on Carolina March.