College Sports in the Carolinas
Watch for Al Myatt's
profile of new ECU Chancellor Steven Ballard in this summer's
from the East
Friday, July 30, 2004
By Al Myatt
TV menu for Pirate fans
features league dishes
East Carolina football is coming to a den, living room or sports bar near
Jeff Charles, "The Voice" of the Pirates and director of electronic media at
ECU, said Thursday that plans are in place for WITN-7 to televise four of
ECU's Conference USA road football games.
Charles will team with WITN sports anchor Billy Weaver on games at
Louisville on Oct. 2, Southern Miss on Oct. 23, Houston on Nov. 6, and South
Florida on Nov. 13.
Charles said ESPN regional will produce the Louisville and South Florida
games. WITN crews will handle production of the Southern Miss and Houston
"Last year WITN produced the North Carolina game and did a really good job
so this was the compromise we worked out," Charles said.
Tim Moreland will be back to do the radio description on the Pirate network
for the games when Charles is involved with television. Former Pirate great
running back Carlester Crumpler and Charles will be together for the 17th
year on the radio for the non-televised matchups.
Marty Feurer is on the radio broadcasts for the 11th year. Former ECU
defensive back Kevin Monroe will seek stories on the sideline for the second
You may be wondering about the television status of the N.C. State game in
Charlotte on Nov. 27.
"We need to sell more tickets before we commit on the State game," Charles
Neinas gears up
Former Big Eight Conference commissioner and ex-NCAA executive Chuck Neinas
met with members of ECU's task force on the search for an athletic director
at a site near RDU airport on Thursday. One objective of the meeting was to
make sure everyone is on the same page as far as a profile on the position.
Neinas offered a number of attributes.
"The chancellor has to have complete confidence in the ability of this
person to run the department," said the professional consultant. "The
individual has to have ability to serve as an effective conduit to the
university (administration, students and faculty) and to the outside world
as well as an important component — university alumni.
"The person needs effective management skills. They need to understand the
business aspects of intercollegiate athletics. They need to have ability as
a fund-raiser either in person or have good fund-raisers on staff.
"The most important role for the athletic director is taking charge of
student-athletes and the most important aspect of that is hiring the coach."
James Talton, chairman of the ECU board of trustees, focused on one aspect
"Far and away the single most important criterion is integrity," Talton
Chancellor Steve Ballard, who will ultimately make the choice of AD and
assume responsibility for it, weighed in on Neinas' marching orders as well.
"He or she should be a great leader," Ballard said of the ideal AD. "They
should be a program builder and they should be someone of integrity who has
the confidence and support of the ECU family."
Ballard went into conference with Steven Showfety and Talton after the task
force concluded its meeting with Neinas. Showfety is the vice chairman of
the board of trustees and chaired the initial athletic director search
committee which produced interim ECU AD Nick Floyd, Gamecock Club director
Jeff Barber and former Air Force AD Randall Spetman, now AD at Utah State,
Ballard met with all three previous finalists but didn't offer the position
to any of them and ultimately restructured the search process to include the
hiring of a consultant to facilitate the selection.
The task force went into closed session for just over an hour to discuss
some potential candidates with Neinas. The task force may have some interest
in former Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks administrator Mike Reinfelt.
Ballard hopes to have the position filled in 60 days but reiterated that
finding the right person takes precedence over a timetable.
ECU basketball coach Bill Herrion has been doing some "globetrotting" but
not the kind that involves spinning the ball on his finger or making no-look
passes to the tune of Sweet Georgia Brown. Herrion was back in his office on
Thursday after trips to Las Vegas and a national AAU tournament in Orlando
to evaluate elite high school prospects.
Even though the Pirates coach has two scholarships available with the recent
transfer of Frank Robinson to Cal State Fullerton, he said it is unlikely
ECU will sign another player before the 2004-05 season.
"In this year's class we've brought in several perimeter players — Tom
Hammonds, Jonathan Hart and Marvin Kilgore," Herrion said. "Right now we're
staying put unless something at the last minute pops up and we think it's
"When you get kids really late, there's a reason why they're still
available. We've gambled late before and it hasn't worked out."
Herrion knew in the spring that Robinson might be leaving the program after
a promising freshman season.
"I really think it was a personal matter of getting closer to his family in
California," Herrion said. "He started in Conference USA the second half of
the season. Honestly, I'm disappointed he's not coming back. He had a chance
to be a good, solid player here."
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02/23/2007 12:46:05 AM