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Houston leaving JMU for Pirates

James Madison NC State Football

James Madison head coach Mike Houston talks on his radio during the first half an NCAA college football game against North Carolina State in Raleigh, N.C., Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome)

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By RONNIE WOODWARD
The Daily Reflector

Sunday, December 2, 2018

James Madison athletics director Jeff Bourne announced Sunday night that football coach Mike Houston is leaving JMU to accept a coaching opportunity at another school, which is presumed to be East Carolina.

ECU, which dismissed coach Scottie Montgomery on Thursday in his third season, had not made the hire official as of Sunday night but had called an emergency Board of Trustees meeting for Monday morning. Southern Miss athletics director Jon Gilbert also is expected to fill the Pirates’ vacant athletics director position.

Houston posted a 37-6 record in three seasons at James Madison, including winning the 2016 Football Championship Subdivision national championship and beating ECU, 34-14, the next year in Greenville. He also has been head coach at Lenoir-Rhyne and The Citadel.

Statement from Mike Houston, as released by JMU:

"The past three years for Amanda and I and our boys have been nothing short of amazing as far as our experience in Harrisonburg, Virginia and being part of James Madison University. I could not be more grateful for the opportunity to be part of what I believe is a perfect college environment found at JMU. I will forever be indebted to Jeff Bourne, Vice President Charlie King and President Jonathan Alger for believing in me and handing me the reins to coach the James Madison University football program. There's only one JMU. This is a special place and a place that will be hard to ever replicate in future coaching opportunities. I will always have incredible memories of my time here. To JMU Nation, I want to say thank you for the most loyal and passionate support that any coach could ever ask for. My only regret is not getting back to Frisco, Texas this year. I am confident in and believe in the players in this program and look forward to following along next year as they make another incredible run."

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

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ECU

February 17, 2019

East Carolina softball’s four-game undefeated run through the Pirate Clash ended Sunday with the Pirates off to their best start to a season since beginning 8-0 in 2006.

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February 17, 2019

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The Pirates hit just one field goal in the opening eight minutes against Tulsa and trailed by as many as 17 points in the first half before storming back and…

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February 17, 2019

Facing cold temperatures and an early deficit at Clark-LeClair Stadium, there were times Sunday when things could have gotten away from East Carolina’s baseball team.

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February 17, 2019

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February 16, 2019

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February 16, 2019

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February 15, 2019

A total of 21 runs by East Carolina powered the Pirates to a college baseball opening day sweep of Radford at Clark-LeClair Stadium on Friday.

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February 15, 2019

CATCHER

Jake Washer, junior: Washer is back as East Carolina’s starting catcher after receiving Major League Baseball draft interest following his breakout sophomore season. In addition to showing power with six home runs and 40 RBIs a year ago, Washer posted a smooth .287 batting average.…

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February 15, 2019

Equipped with All-American Bryant Packard ready to serve again as East Carolina’s leadoff man in the batting order and a stable of proven pitchers who battled during the preseason for lead rotation spots, ECU is ready to face an opponent and begin a new season.

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February 15, 2019

WEEKEND ROTATION

FRIDAY

Alec Burleson, sophomore: Burleson will be a frequent player at designated hitter and first base in the lineup, but his main focus in the season opener versus Radford will be on the pitcher’s mound. The left-hander, who was the American Athletic Conference rookie…

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