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Editorial: Holland earns thanks

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In 2004, the year that East Carolina University hired Terry Holland as the school’s athletics director, the Pirates limped to a two-win season under Head Coach John Thompson and Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium held a maximum of 43,000 fans. The men’s basketball team tied for 12th place in Conference USA, though the university would open the stunning Clark-LeClair Stadium in a matter of months.

To deny the transformation of Pirate sports that have come under the leadership and direction of Holland is to forget the state of affairs when he accepted the position he now plans to depart. The East Carolina community should be sincerely grateful to him for the strides made under his watch, and hope that his successor can extend that record of achievement in the years to come.

Wednesday brought the surprise announcement that Holland, after eight years at the helm of Pirate sports, would move into an emeritus position upon selection of a new athletics director. Holland intends to assist the search process for his replacement and then to serve in an unspecified development capacity, presumably as a trusted voice on matters involving Pirate athletics.

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To borrow a phrase

We are your Opus Coach Holland. We, in the Pirate Nation are all better off for having you to lead us. You will alway be a part of us and we will always be a part of you. Thanks for being there when we needed you. Best wishes in your new career. Take some time off and go hit some golf balls or catch some fish, or just relax, you have certainly earned it.

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Bless your heart
Bless your heart