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Bailey's Take on Pirate Sports

From the Anchor Desk
Friday, September 20, 2002
By Brian Bailey
Sports Anchor of WNCT-TV 9


Good time to give it a rest



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The off week comes at a great time for just about everybody.

The coaches need a mental break. The players need a physical break. And the fans could just use a break, period.

Everybody has an opinion. Some say this is not a very good football team this year. Others say it is a rebuilding type year and to give it time. I say they are both right.

The team that lost to Duke and to Wake Forest was not a very good football teams. At times, that team showed brilliance on both sides of the football. At other times, well….

Then against Tulane, the running game resurfaced and the conservative game plan worked to perfection. Add the zero in the turnovers category into the equation, and you come up with a badly needed victory.

Yes, the open week interrupts that momentum, but Pirate head coach Steve Logan takes one look at his banged up arsenal of players and figures a Saturday relegated to watching games on TV has major pluses.

“The break does come at a good time for our football team,” said Pirate Coach Steve Logan. “It gives us a chance to heal up in several spots. Several players that wouldn’t be able to play this coming Saturday will be ready for the West Virginia game.”

Any team would rather be playing its best football at the end of the season. Take the Pirates season last year. A winning wave to end the year would have been such a plus to the program.

Folks would have been jumping off the Greene Street Bridge with three straight losses to start the 2002 season. It is truly hard to believe that the Tulane win broke a five-game losing streak for the program. It wasn’t that bad, was it?

Laying down the challenge

Logan wants this Pirate football squad to understand just what is at stake at West Virginia.

“I told the team that we have won at all of the premier places in the Big East,” Logan explained. “This East Carolina program has won at Miami, at Syracuse, at Virginia Tech, but we have never won at Morgantown. That’s the challenge, to go to West Virginia and grow up as a football team and get a victory.”

Getting a victory at West Virginia certainly won’t be easy. However, the Pirates have an affinity for the artificial turf, so speed could be a factor.

“Our guys always like playing on the turf,” said ECU running backs coach Jerry McManus. “They are a little quicker, and sometimes that makes a difference.”

Over the years, I’ve seen guys get on the turf and it seems to give them an extra gear. They may just be a tiny bit faster, but mentally, they think they are REALLY faster.

Fortunately, the Pirates are also playing West Virginia during the nice part of the season. There’s nothing like an icy November day in Morgantown to get the blood pumping.

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02/23/2007 01:23:17 AM

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