Loading...
I think if we had two cable companies operating in Greenville we might see improved customer service. But what can you...

WOODWARD: Pirates dealing with crushing reality

090318ECUfootball-8.jpg
1 of 2

East Carolina receiver Trevon Brown kneels after an incompletion as North Carolina A&T's Richie Kittles celebrates during their game Sunday at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium.

082517GMAG-top10-2.jpg
Loading…

By RONNIE WOODWARD
The Daily Reflector

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Life is often about choices, except when there is only one option.

When East Carolina’s football players stormed out of the Murphy Center amid purple smoke on Saturday night at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium around 7:45 p.m. and were amped to kick off against North Carolina A&T, they were quickly told they had no choice but to return to their locker room because of lightning in the area. Fans also were required to vacate the bleachers.

The unfortunate scene set the tone for another hectic and humbling weekend for the Pirates.

The game eventually was postponed to Sunday, which is when the real humbling process set in for the Pirates.

A&T, a Football Championship Subdivision team that went undefeated last season but still was not expected to win at ECU, used a comeback in the second half to steal a 28-23 victory. Nationwide, it was viewed as another head-scratching blow dealt to ECU.

Regardless of the outcome, the Aggies were guaranteed to receive about $300,000 from ECU for coming to Greenville to play the game. These deals are set up in advance because the lower-level team is not supposed to win.

ECU is left no choice but to pay, figuratively and literally, for starting a second straight season with a loss to an FCS opponent.

In a celebration video posted on Twitter by N.C. A&T athletics Sunday night, first-year Aggies coach Sam Washington delivered the crushing line from the visiting locker room underneath the northside bleachers of ECU’s stadium that is undergoing a massive renovation project.

“One last thing, tell them to bring me my money,” Washington told his players in excitement as he flashed a we-just-pulled-a-shocker grin.

This one was a shocker, more than when 2016 FCS champion James Madison came to Greenville in 2017 and used a 410-70 advantage in rushing yards to run away with a 34-14 win.

Dating back to 1982, East Carolina had won 25 straight matchups against the FCS (formerly Division I-AA) until losing the last two.

But the Pirates also have no time to dwell on the upset loss, because they have consecutive games coming against the Atlantic Coast Conference, and ECU is now the underdog. It begins with a short week to prepare for hosting North Carolina on Saturday in the most important game of Scottie Montgomery’s coaching career.

Montgomery and his staff and players have to face the reality of the start to this season. They have no choice.

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

Loading…

Humans of Greenville

@HumansofGville

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

ECU

September 19, 2018

Joe Dooley’s second stint as East Carolina’s basketball coach will begin Nov. 6 with a home against Delaware State, which is part of the Pirates playing seven games in Minges Coliseum in November and 18 total for the 2018-19 season.

ECU released its schedule Wednesday afternoon and it…

060918ECUBasketball-8.jpg

September 19, 2018

East Carolina could benefit from touchbacks and fair catches in Saturday night’s football matchup at South Florida.

USF freshman Terrence Horne raced to two kickoff return touchdowns already in a win against Georgia Tech on Sept. 8 to make him the only player in the country this year with…

081218ECUfootball-6.jpg

September 19, 2018

Temple made a big jump in the American Athletic Conference football beat writer rankings, and East Carolina also moved up a spot to eighth this week.

The Sunshine State occupies the top two spots, led again by steady Central Florida. South Florida takes over second place, has a 3-0 record and hosts…

090918ECUfootball-20.jpg

September 18, 2018

East Carolina’s football team had a rare opportunity to be unified and fully concentrated on watching South Florida play at Illinois last Saturday, a game that ended with the Bulls rallying for 18 points in the fourth quarter for a 25-19 win and 3-0 start to their season.

ECU sought safe…

090918ECUfootball-3.jpg

September 18, 2018

A win at a Pac-12 opponent, a shutout and then a record-setting outing on offense.

Cincinnati is 3-0 and riding high in the American Athletic Conference football ranks, following a Week 1 upset at UCLA with a 21-0 win against Miami of Ohio and then Saturday it beat Alabama A&M 63-7 behind a…

Cincinnati UCLA Football

September 17, 2018

The use of FaceTime on phones has been invaluable for the East Carolina football team, which avoided the direct hit of Hurricane Florence when it left for Orlando, Fla., last Wednesday but in many ways still is dealing with the aftermath.

That is especially true for players who have family in…

090918ECUfootball-44.jpg

September 15, 2018

East Carolina football is under reconstruction.

For the first time last Saturday, some progress was evident on the field inside the Pirates' home stadium currently surrounded by scaffolding and temporary fencing. That is evidence of a bold $60 million upgrade in the works.

The men who wear the…

090918ECUfootball-23.jpg

September 15, 2018

East Carolina was in last place for the first two installments of the American Athletic Conference writers’ power rankings, but after the Pirates’ 41-19 rout of North Carolina they moved up to ninth.

ECU (at Virginia Tech) and league frontrunner UCF (at N.C. State) had their games…

090918ECUfootball-12.jpg

September 14, 2018

There was a play last Saturday at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium when a North Carolina safety was staring at an East Carolina backfield with two guys totaling 463 pounds on a third-and-3 play near midfield.

The UNC safety keyed on the wrong player during the read option, chasing after 6-foot-3, 236-pound…

090918ECUfootball-24.jpg

September 12, 2018

East Carolina’s football team bused from Greenville to Orlando, Fla., on Wednesday and will remain there until its next game.

The Pirates’ game Saturday at Virginia Tech was canceled Tuesday because of Hurricane Florence and a release by ECU on Wednesday referenced issues of…

090918ECUfootball-30.jpg
192 stories in ECU. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 20
        Next Page»   Last Page»