Insights and Observations
Watch for Henry Hinton's
feature story on veteran Hollywood actress and loyal ECU alum
Beth Grant in
Thursday, July 29, 2004
By Henry Hinton
Hints of football season
cropping up all over
TALK OF THE TOWN with Henry
Replay Wednesday's program with
co- host Kevin Miller and guest
Mike Money of ECU sports
Here we are at the end of July and thoughts are turning
to fall Saturdays in Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium. This week’s Conference USA media
event in Memphis signifies that kickoff cannot be far away.
Members of the media and coaches from all of the
league’s schools will meet in Memphis early next week to talk about the
upcoming season. There will be a little golf and a lot of socializing at the
hospitality suite to grease the skids for media-coach relations for the
Won’t matter. By the end of the first week in
September, coaches will be mad at things the media writes and says and the
reporters will feel the coaches haven’t been honest with them about some
ridiculous issue. Same old same old.
For football fans, though, it’s the most wonderful time
of the year (with apologies to Andy Williams.)
ECU is already out pushing to sell tickets. The
marketing department has just released a cutting edge idea of selling
corporate season tickets. Any legitimate organized group or business can buy
a block of season tickets at a large discount and pick up some extras like
picnics and autographed balls along the way.
I have heard some complaints about this season’s
schedule but those of us old timers who suffered through cold Saturdays with
the likes of Furman and Richmond being the marquee games will be excited to
see Wake Forest, Cincinnati and Army come to town this season.
Of course the season will end with a game on
Thanksgiving weekend in Charlotte with N.C. State. That game is considered a
home game of sorts for ECU even though it is being played in a neutral site.
Regular season ticket holders will not have to purchase a separate ticket
for that big one in Charlotte. However, the corporate season ticket does not
include the game with the Wolfpack.
The two huge home games will feature the Deacons and
the Black Knights of the Hudson. Having Army in Greenville is always special
and generally becomes one of the largest crowds of the season.
Already ticket sales for special groups in the military
are being marketed to area bases. This game also affords area parents and
family members of West Point students and graduates an opportunity to see a
game close by. I recently spoke to the parents of a second year cadet from
Durham who have already purchased a block of tickets to be here with their
son. The Academy’s alumni are truly national in scope.
Having Wake Forest back in town will also be fun. While
last season’s record took away a little of the glitz, it is always fun to
have an ACC school in Greenville. The Deacons have taken the last three
meetings between the two in-state rivals and ECU has not beaten WFU since
Jim Grobe took over as head coach. Pirate fans are hoping Dowdy-Ficklen will
become a “no Wake zone” on September 11 for the home opener. (Sorry. It’s a
little boat humor.)
The Pirates are 6-4 in home openers in the last ten
years and they haven’t won in Greenville since November 23, 2002. John
Thompson would love to get his first home victory against an ACC team. That
could set the tone for a huge turnaround.
Thompson and other coaches joined sponsors of ECU
athletics at a gathering at Ironwood Country Club in Greenville on Tuesday
for lunch. The marketing department holds a golf tournament each year in
late July to thank the advertisers of the various athletic events. Thompson
shook hands with everyone but left before the golf began to head back to the
office for more season prep.
All of the above is a sure indication that football
will soon be here.
Send an e-mail message to
Click here to dig into Henry Hinton's
02/23/2007 10:13:49 AM