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ECU coach Ruffin McNeill speaks to the media during his weekly press conference Monday.
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Rhett Butler/The Daily Reflector

ECU coach Ruffin McNeill speaks to the media during his weekly press conference Monday.

Pirates lose defensive end for season

By Nathan Summers

The Daily Reflector

2 Comments | Leave a Comment

One of the healthiest teams in college football so far this season has been dealt its first dose of injury.

East Carolina redshirt freshman defensive end Justin Dixon will miss the remainder of the season after suffering a serious knee injury during the first half of ECU's loss to North Carolina last Saturday in Chapel Hill. It was the first injury of the season that directly impacts the Pirates' roster, and the pain will be felt by more than just Dixon.

The loss means the Pirates (2-2) are down to four ends on a defense that has shown signs of promise but which has plummeted to 103rd in the nation in rush defense, 107th in pass defense and 114th in total defense as ECU prepares for its always difficult trip to Southern Miss this week.

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"...and NC State will complete an ACC sweep this season." Didn't Va Tech beat NCSU?

ECU game play

ECU lost the UNC game in the third quarter as they did the VaTech game and almost did in the Tulsa and Memphis games. Until ECU finds a team that will and can play in the third quarter and not fold, the Pirate Nation may not see another win any time soon. A "high powered," "exciting" offense is one thing. Points have to be scored in order to win but three points will win a game if the defense does its job. So far, ECU's defense has not. I'd rather see good defense than lots of passes and ineffective runs into the middle of the offensive line. There was a time when ECU was a national leader in rushing defense. Coach McNeil and his staff would be well advised to concentrate on two things: total defensive effectiveness and a solid, impressive running game that does not necessitate having to pass 30 - 40 times a game. Unless these areas see great improvement by Saturday, the ride home from Hattiesburg will be a long one and NC State will complete an ACC sweep this season.

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Bless your heart
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