NEWS, NOTES &
The Bradsher Beat
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
By Bethany Bradsher
Wading through the media fog
All rights reserved.
It’s certainly a mixed bag, this business of
Here’s the thing the Pirate Nation does
extremely well: plow through the season under the radar, winning and
celebrating, losing and commiserating and making plenty of memories.
The East Carolina
faithful are accustomed to carrying out this routine by themselves, not
under the watchful eye of every media outlet in the United States.
Yet in this age of 24-7
access and updates, everyone in and around Greenville should have seen it
coming. ECU turns in its strongest start in decades, toppling national
powerhouses, and suddenly the Pirates are getting print and digital
shout-outs from coast to coast.
A scan of some of the
most prominent stories of the past week reveals touches of hyperbole,
sentimentality, thoughtful assessment and even one major typo.
A sampling, along with my
completely pointless distinctions:
Most Likely to Leave a
Party Before it Even Gets Started:
This award goes to the
Wall Street Journal, not generally a purveyor of Pirate tales but the
publication that, on September 15, referred to “poor East Carolina” in light
of the BCS picture. Because Utah and Brigham Young both have more demanding
schedules than ECU, the story said, the Pirates will be denied a trip to the
big bowls if all three schools run the table.
A nightmarish end to a
dream season already seems realistic,” the article said.
Article that Most
Frequently Caused the Reader to Ask, “Which Paper am I Reading, Again?”
Always good for a
surprise, the student-run Daily Tar Heel in Chapel Hill featured a column
that must have rendered some Tar Heel haters a tad speechless.
“The atmosphere there
infects you as soon as you step outside on game
day,” the author said of Greenville. “If you join the bandwagon, do so
because the people of Greenville deserve a great college football team.
They’ve earned it by
providing a great college football environment. And if you ever find
yourself at Kenan Stadium watching the football game take a backseat to a
meet-and-greet, stand up and yell, 'First Down, Tar Heels … Argh!' Because
Chapel Hill could use a healthy dose of piracy.”
From USA Today on
September 13, the news flash that ECU is “the darling of the 2008 college
The “You’re #1, What’s Your
Name Again?” Award
To ESPN.com’s Graham
Watson, who placed ECU at the top of her Non-BCS/Independent Power Rankings
less than a week after she wrote a Conference USA outlook with a tag on the
bottom listing the “East Carolina Panthers” as one of the league’s members.
Invitation to See How Much
the Roads to the East Have Improved in 25 Years
This one should be issued
to The Charlotte Observer’s Tom Sorenson, a good columnist who wrote a nice
piece about the East Carolina spirit, history and barbecue and reminisced
extensively about a trip he made to Greenville in 1983.
“You do not drive past
the campus on the way to somewhere else,” Sorenson wrote. “You need a reason
to go there.”
After a quarter century,
maybe Sorenson will find another reason of his own this season.
Best Bulletin Board-Ready
From ESPN.com’s Mark
Schlabach: “Make no mistake. East Carolina is a very, very good football
Close second, from the
Sept. 16 Orlando Sentinel: “No team in America had a better first two games
than Skip Holtz's Pirates.”
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09/22/2008 04:11:12 AM