If AVCS is off, the cams are at a normal state of fully retarded. AVCS only advances the intake cam by up to 20 degrees, there is is no retarding of the intake cam from the 0 position.
Oil pressure plays a considerable role in the AVCS actuation. There are some things that are unclear to me. For instance, if the oil pressure is low, is the AVCS slower to respond? It's a closed loop system so oil will flow until the target advance is reached and then hone it on that.
When you say "cooling" west-minist do you mean cooling of the combustion chamber? Cool air would seem good!!
Good reading on cam overlap, scavenging, etc on an NA engine:
Specifically advancing the intake cam's opening and reversion on a NA motor:
Ultimately we'll need experience and data, but a little theory from the old ones is not a bad thing. Note: boost changes the equation considerably.