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From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, December 4, 2012

By Brian Bailey

Brian Bailey

On to New Orleans


Pirate Radio 1250 & 930 Logo

Brian BaileyReplay Monday night's BRIAN BAILEY SHOW. Brian's guests were beat writer Tim Buckley of the Lafayette Daily Advertiser and R+L Carriers Bowl Executive Director Billy Ferrante. Eastern North Carolina's longest running sports radio call-in show airs each Monday night from 6:30-7:30 on Pirate Radio 1250 and 930.
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On to New Orleans
Audio: WTIB (TOT: Pam Coffman)
Spied from the Crow's Nest
Web Headlines Roundup
Big East was ECU’s only move
Audio: Coach Ruff on Bowling & Big East
Denny O'Brien's Harris BCS Poll Ballot
Final BCS Standings
Harris, AP & USA Today Polls
Updated C-USA Bowl Schedule & TV Listings
Niners overpower East Carolina
Whidbee bringing red zone talents to ECU
Ruff has a new tool in his bag
Gridiron Pirates set sail for Big East
News sweep: ECU to Big East
Press Conference Audio: ECU to Big East
ECU Football Schedule
ECU Basketball Schedule
Year-by-Year Recruiting

By Brian Bailey
All rights reserved.

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Tulsa’s overtime win over Central Florida in Saturday's Conference-USA title game sends East Carolina to New Orleans for the postseason. The Pirates (8-4) will take on the Ragin’ Cajuns of Louisiana-Lafayette in the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl on December 22.

It’s a return trip for the Ragin’ Cajuns. They beat San Diego State 32-30 in last year’s New Orleans Bowl, winning the game on a Brett Baer 50-yard field goal as time expired.

For the Pirates, it’s a return trip to college football’s postseason after missing out last year.

“We are looking forward to it,” said ECU coach Ruffin McNeill at an informal media gathering Sunday afternoon. [Replay Coach Ruff's remarks...] “Not going to a bowl last year makes it even more special. It is great for our players, our coaches and their families.

"We are excited about it. I know Louisiana Lafayette played in it last year and did a good job against San Diego State. We’re looking forward to playing against a good football team.”

The R+L Carriers Bowl may not be the biggest of the bowls, but New Orleans is a great bowl city. It also provides a different challenge. It’s a fine line between enjoying the bowl city and getting the work done that is necessary to win the football game that week.

“We’ll address bowl rules early,” said McNeill. “We have two weeks before we go to the bowl site. I’ll address team rules and expectations early on. We are going to a great city, but we know we have a job to do. We want to play our best game for our last game.”

Last week the Pirates made news by finally getting that invitation to join the Big East Conference as a football-playing membery. While it’s certainly not the news it would have been five years ago, it’s still a step up for the Pirate program. McNeill says he’s gotten plenty of positive response on the recruiting trail.

“I’m excited about it,” McNeill said. “I think it’s going to benefit all sports. I’m looking forward to the competition. It will be great for recruiting. It will expand our base. I think it’s great for our university.

"We got a lot of notice going into the schools. All of the high school coaches and parents brought up the move and I think they were excited about it as we are.”

The Pirates get back to work with practice later today. McNeill and his staff have a plan for the bowl practices that really highlights the younger players and focuses on getting them ready for spring football.

“That’s one of the advantages for sure,” McNeill said. “You get a chance to prepare your young players. We will have 12 days to work before we go to New Orleans. The first five days will be fundamentals, sharpening our skills, and working with our young players.

"We’ll get five good scrimmages in with our young players before we really dive into Louisiana-Lafayette.”

ECU fans will have to get the Christmas shopping done early with the December 22 bowl date. Either that or they can wait until the last minute and come back home to take advantage of the late sales.

Or they can buy their gifts in New Orleans and make it a Pirate Christmas for sure...


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Brian Bailey Archives

12/04/2012 04:25 AM


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