Stop printing EBT cards and illegal immigration ceases to exist. Global warming would take a hit too....

Jones in game mode


ECU's inside receiver Isaiah Jones scores a touchdown vs SMU


By Nathan Summers
The Daily Reflector

Thursday, August 25, 2016

For Zay Jones, there is not nearly as much left to learn as there is to perfect.

Already one of the more accomplished wide receivers in East Carolina football history, the senior has had plenty of time to adjust to a new coaching staff, and just as much time to imagine what his final collegiate season holds.

He is in game mode, and he will not likely be out of it until after the holidays.

With a mere matter of days separating Jones and the final season kickoff of his college career, part of the anticipation process is checking and rechecking all of the minute details. It’s not just about football either.

“I’m in the fine-tuning stage of my collegiate career as a whole,” said Jones, an Austin, Texas, native who can join former teammate Justin Hardy as a consecutive 1,000-yard receiver with a big final campaign. “I’m just taking everything in and I’m enjoying every stage of it. I’m enjoying this process. You can always improve, always get better. You’ve always got to critique yourself, and I consider myself to be my harshest critic, so day in and day out, I try to find ways to improve my game.”

For players like Jones, who this year shifted to the outside from his previous slot position, improvement itself is a pretty fine process after his considerable accomplishments. The preseason first-team all-American Athletic Conference performer is coming off a season that featured 98 receptions for 1,099 yards and five touchdowns.

Now Jones will be counted on to be a game-breaker in new ways, and along with weapons like junior Trevon Brown back in the pass game, he is brimming with confidence about the many ways in which the Pirates can put defenses in peril.

“We’re straight ballers all across the board,” Jones said of the ECU receivers, which also include seniors Jimmy Williams and Davon Grayson and sophomore Terrell Green on the outside, and junior Quay Johnson and senior James Summers on the inside. “We’re lethal weapons. We’ve got guys that can just make plays.

“I’m just so grateful and blessed to lead this pack.”

Without question, Jones and most of the veteran ECU players have long since put their focus on Western Carolina, the Pirates’ season-opening opponent on Sept. 3.

Regardless of who would have lined up across from him first, however, Jones already has a one-track mind when it comes to his immediate future. 

“Now we’re in that game week, that game mode, so we’re detailing everything and we’re going to keep on tightening those screws and focusing on Western,” he said.


Contact Nathan Summers nsummers@reflector.com, 252-329-9595 or follow @NateSumm99 on Twitter.


Humans of Greenville


Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.


October 20, 2018

These three questions appeared in The Daily Reflector’s Pirate Gameday section previewing East Carolina’s home football game against 10th-ranked Central Florida. 

Check back after the primetime matchup for answers to the questions and more insight from the game.

1. Who wins the…


October 20, 2018

Before Holton Ahlers signed on Dec. 20, 2017, to play football at East Carolina, he was a star quarterback at D.H. Conley High School. Before that, a baseball slugger unlike anyone else who had ever played on Greenville recreational fields.

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October 20, 2018

New starting quarterback Holton Ahlers and East Carolina welcome undefeated Central Florida to Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium tonight for a primetime matchup on ESPN2 that many people around the country will at least check in on to see if UCF could get upended.

There is no denying that a win by the Pirates,…


October 20, 2018

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October 19, 2018

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Houston, which just defeated East Carolina 42-20 and has won its first two league games by an average 18.5 points, moved to No. 2 in…


October 19, 2018

Central Florida’s 19-game football winning streak saw its closest contest yet last Saturday at Memphis.

The 10th-ranked Knights recovered from a slow start and rallied to win, 31-30, for a 6-0 record this season.

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SMU UCF Football

October 18, 2018

Less than three weeks away from starting a new season on Nov. 6, the East Carolina women’s basketball team had a major change in leadership Wednesday when head coach Heather Macy resigned at the conclusion of an ECU internal review into the program.

Macy, who is the winningest coach in ECU…


October 18, 2018

A look at individual defensive statistics with the halfway point of the college football season already passed shows that what East Carolina’s Nate Harvey is doing is not a fluke.

In his first season playing defensive line, the former Pirate running back and linebacker leads the nation with…


October 17, 2018

East Carolina women’s basketball coach Heather Macy resigned on Wednesday after the conclusion of an internal review led by the ECU athletics’ office of compliance, citing her misunderstanding of practice rules.

Macy became the Pirates’ all-time leader in women’s…


October 17, 2018

The go-to saying for East Carolina basketball coach Joe Dooley regarding forward Seth LeDay is that LeDay is the best fast-twitch player for the Pirates this year.

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“He has a quick first jump and a quick second jump,” Dooley said. “I like those fast-twitch guys.…

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