Take on Pirate Sports
From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, July 22, 2003
By Brian Bailey
Sports Anchor of WNCT-TV 9
Football powerbrokers eclipse
Conference USA’s football coaches are meeting in Memphis. The Atlantic
Coast Conference coaches are meeting in Georgia.
And BCS bigshots are meeting — somewhere.
Yes, even the Bowl Championship Series honchos are active this summer,
with a couple of curious nuggets coming out last
First, it’s official that the Big East Conference will remain a BCS
member, at least until the current contract ends after the January 2006
bowls. That was really never an issue, although this new look Big East isn’t
anywhere close to being as strong as it was before the ACC went fishing.
In fact, a BCS oversight committee official was quoted by the Associated
Press as saying that the Big East’s chances of remaining in the BCS in the
next contract depend on how attractive the reconstituted conference would be
to television networks.
Also, the BCS says it won’t consider using a tournament to determine its
so-called national champion, despite pleas to open its controversial path to
the title to more schools. The school presidents serving on the BCS
committee instead instructed the commissioners of the six BCS leagues to
come up with proposals for changing the BCS without a playoff.
The potential good news is that the panel will meet with representatives
from the five non-BCS Division I-A conferences on September 8 in Chicago to
hear their concerns about the current system.
Tulane president Scott Cowen is leading the non-BCS
cause. He says the invitation is a positive step, but
adds that eliminating options such as a playoff before the meeting raises
the question of "what are we talking about?"
While all this is going on, you can add another Florida team into the mix
of Division I-A programs searching for a BCS connection.
Florida A&M is moving up. The NCAA
has approved the Rattlers' application to advance to Division I-A as early
as next year. No other historically black college is in the NCAA's highest
classification of football-playing schools.
The school's pending promotion makes it ineligible for the 2003 Division
I-AA playoffs and the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference football title.
None of this is earth-shattering information, but it does seem to reflect
at least some type of sentiment towards the non-BCS schools.
Preseason prognostications a mixed bag for
The C-USA coaches collectively predicted East Carolina will finish sixth
in John Thompson’s first season. Texas Christian was their top pick while
Southern Miss was second.
Intriguingly, the Pirates did pick up a single first place vote from one
of the league’s coaches. I wonder which coach that was..?
Three prominent ECU players were named to the preseason All Conference-USA
team. Running back Art Brown, offensive lineman Brian Rimpf and kick
returner Terrance Copper were all tabbed.
Herrion navigates summer recruiting freeway
When he’s not in camp, he’s on the road. Pirate basketball coach Bill
Herrion has had a busy summer.
“The month of July is a very busy month for college coaches,” Herrion
said. “There is a lot going on on the recruiting trail. We do a lot of our
recruiting in the summer. We are looking at a lot of youngsters who are
rising seniors in high school. We go to the exposure camps, the Nike, the
Adidas camps, so we’ve been pretty busy trying to find some guys for the
Herrion is and always will be a tireless worker. He realizes that this
ECU hoops job is a challenging one and he just refuses to get outworked.
“We continue to build our basketball program at East Carolina, trying to
get better in Conference USA," he said. "We need to keep increasing the
talent level and that’s what we use the summer for.”
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