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Dooley eyeing possible ECU offer

NCAA Florida Gulf Coast Florida State Basketball
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Joe Dooley talks to his Florida Gulf Coast players during an NCAA tournament game against Florida State on March 17, 2017 in Orlando, Fla. FSU won 86-80. (AP Photo/Gary McCullough)

NCAA Florida Gulf Coast Florida State Basketball
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By RONNIE WOODWARD
The Daily Reflector

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

There is mutual interest between East Carolina and Florida Gulf Coast basketball coach Joe Dooley, and a deal to bring Dooley back to ECU could become a real possibility after FGCU is done with the NIT.

An ECU offer would need to be extended and both sides would have to agree on full details including recruiting and travel budgets, according to sources, for Dooley to return to ECU for his second stint after leading the Pirates for four seasons during the late-1990s.

An FGCU source said this week that Dooley would be ready to consider an East Carolina offer after the NIT and probably accept. The Eagles, who are nearing the end of their fifth straight 20-win season under Dooley, lost at Oklahoma State on Tuesday night in the first round of the NIT to finish 23-12.

Sources have indicated that ECU made initial contact with Dooley’s agent while previously surveying and checking with candidates. Dooley also has been linked to the Missouri State opening.

The Pirates were in a similar position with Dooley in 2010, but they were not able to finalize a deal.

ECU hired Jeff Lebo that year, and he was early in his eighth season when he resigned on Nov. 29, 2017. Michael Perry stepped in as interim coach and the team finished 10-20.

It is unclear exactly how the coaching search will be affected by Friday’s decision by the ECU board of trustees and athletics director Jeff Compher to end Compher’s tenure on May 1 via a contract buyout. Chancellor Cecil Staton said Friday that Compher will not be involved in the basketball coaching search moving forward and Staton’s hope was for a special council to be available to him this week.

Dooley went 57-52 at East Carolina from 1995-99, starting with consecutive 17-win campaigns. But after a 13-14 record in 1999 he was fired by then-Pirate AD Mike Hamrick.

The 52-year-old and West Orange, N.J., native became a trusted assistant coach nationally, highlighted by 10 seasons at Kansas under Bill Self.

The Naples Daily News reported that Dooley’s base salary at Florida Golf Coast for this season was $350,000. Lebo reportedly had a base salary of $500,000.

Former Charlotte coach Bobby Lutz also could be an ECU candidate, along with coaches who are in the NCAA tournament this week in Ryan Odom (Maryland-Baltimore County), Wes Miller (UNC Greensboro) and Earl Grant (College of Charleston).

Mark Gottfried, the former N.C. State and Alabama head man, was introduced Tuesday at Cal State Northridge.

Contact Ronnie Woodward at rwoodward@reflector.com, 252-329-9592 and follow @RonnieW11 on Twitter.

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ECU

September 24, 2018

TAMPA, Fla.

Sweat flung from Alex Turner’s face outside the visiting locker room at Raymond James Stadium on Saturday night as he participated in interviews following East Carolina football’s 20-13 loss to 4-0 South Florida.

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September 23, 2018

TAMPA, Fla. — Too many times since East Carolina joined the American Athletic Conference in 2014 have the football Pirates faced an insurmountable deficit in the fourth quarter when playing league games away from Greenville.

Saturday night’s 20-13 loss for ECU at South Florida in…

E Carolina South Florida Football-7

September 23, 2018

N.C. State and Duke keep winning, which gives them the edge over an impressive Appalachian State resume. Also notable from this college football weekend was a 16-13 upset loss by North Carolina A&T to Morgan State.

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September 23, 2018

These questions appeared in The Daily Reflector’s Pirate Gameday section Saturday to preview East Carolina’s matchup at South Florida, which ended as a 20-13 victory for the favored Bulls.

Here are the answers and more insight from the game:

1. Will the East Carolina layoff play a role?…

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September 22, 2018

TAMPA, Fla. — In many ways it was a banner night for the East Carolina football defense Saturday night at Raymond James Stadium.

A grind-it-out game ended as a 20-13 win for host South Florida, however, thanks to a few big plays.

Jordan Cronkrite delivered the crushing blow, dashing through…

E Carolina South Florida Football

September 22, 2018

This ran in The Daily Reflector’s Pirate Gameday section Saturday morning to help preview East Carolina’s American Athletic Conference football opener at South Florida, which is 3-0 and sits just outside the Associated Press Top 25 rankings. 

The game starts at 8 p.m. on ESPNews.…

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September 22, 2018

It has been two weeks since East Carolina has played a football game, and the Pirates spent most of those days in Orlando, Fla., to avoid the direct impact of Hurricane Florence.

They left Orlando for Tampa on Friday and, similar to two weeks ago against North Carolina from the Atlantic Coast…

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September 22, 2018

Q: You had 90 receiving yards and a touchdown against North Carolina on Sept. 8, earning the game ball after the Pirates’ 41-19 win. What did you do with the ball?

A: I’m giving it to my son (5-year-old Quey), and it’s unbelievable just to be able to say that I can give that to my…

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September 21, 2018

Raymond James Stadium is set to host two primetime football games in the coming days, beginning Saturday when East Carolina plays at 3-0 South Florida at 8 p.m.

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

September 20, 2018

Basketball schedules released by East Carolina and the American Athletic Conference this week have East Carolina hosting three men’s-women’s doubleheaders in Minges Coliseum, including two to begin the season.

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