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Bailey's Take on Pirate Sports

From the Anchor Desk
Wednesday, August 11, 2004
By Brian Bailey

Karma coming together second time around



Bonesville Magazine

• PAT DYE: Short on Tenure, Long on Impact

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• NCHSAA & ECU: Smooth Sailing Again


• STEVE BALLARD: New Leader Takes Charge

• SCOTT COWEN: Busting Down the Door

• KEITH LECLAIR on ECU's Field of Dreams

• BETH GRANT: Actress Still a Pirate


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Sensational Stereos



John Thompson has an entirely different attitude in 2004.

You can see it on his face. You can hear it in his voice. This is his team, his staff and his time to excel as a head football coach.

It’s an amazing attitude coming off of a 1-11 season. Still, Thompson has a plan and year two starts much closer to the comfort zone for the East Carolina football boss.

“Things were so much more clear to our players,” said Thompson after the first official preseason practice at ECU. “So much clearer in our meetings, and in our preparations on being focused.

"A year ago everyone was looking at everybody else, wondering, ‘How are you going to be? What are you going to be like?'

"Today it was like everybody knew what we were going to be like. There was a much better response from everyone.”

The squad split into two groups, with each working out for about two hours on the field. Each group spent an hour with the weights.

Thompson says this a big week for his entire team, especially for the newcomers.

“Our guys got some quality work and some quality reps this morning,” Thompson said. “We got to look at a lot of young people. There are going to be a lot of new faces, whether they are junior college transfers, true freshmen or guys that have to rise up and they’re going to get a chance. This week is critical for them because they are going to get so much attention, but today was a good day.”

It’s always a good day when you get the chance to welcome back an outstanding player to camp. Art Brown is back, set to team up with Marvin Townes to make up one of the nation’s top running back tandems.

“It feels good to be back,” said Brown. “I was a little rusty on some things. But as practices go on, day two, day three, everything should come back to me.”

The team will scrimmage for the first time next Tuesday.

Juggling radio schedules

The Brian Bailey Show returns to Cable 7 and Talk 1070 AM on Thursday night, Aug. 19th.

I’ve never been all that comfortable with a show that has my name as the title. In fact, when we first started back in the late 80’s on 94.3, we had a title for the show. I think it was “Sportsline” or “Sports Wrap” or something like that.

Back then it was just a half hour in length. The funny thing is that I was so naïve, I really thought that all you had to do was turn a microphone on, give the phone number, and get set to talk sports.

It doesn’t really work that way. Early in the show’s history, many of the callers had direct ties to the host. Dad would have called, but it was long distance.

When I first started, I would prepare for a couple of hours for each one of the interviews with the coaches, compiling a list of about 35 questions for the hour. I was afraid that I would run out of ideas.

I’ve been extremely lucky over the years that so many Pirate fans have called in, to make my job that much easier. Their questions are much better then mine, anyway.

This year’s show moves to Thursday night from its traditional early-week slot to accommodate the coaches on John Thompson’s staff.

Coach Thompson plans on practicing on Monday nights during the season, from 7 p.m.-9p.m., and he indicated that that Tuesdays will be big film nights. The coach's own call-in show is on Wednesday at 8 p.m. — immediately after Talk 1070's all-new Bonesville Power Hour program, which I will participate in from time to time.

That moves my show to Thursday, but we may be able to move back to Monday after the football season.

I’m also set to be one of the panelists on “The Press Box” on Pirate Radio 1250 on Tuesday nights. I enjoy the weekly bantering that we do on that show with Troy Dreyfuss and the guys from the Daily Reflector.

On game days, I’ll be checking in on the Pirate Radio 1250 pregame and post game shows. I like being on the scene for home games at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium. There’s nothing like a tailgate party at ECU.

My thanks, as always, go out to, which gives me a chance to pen a column each week. It’s a lot of fun and I appreciate the opportunity.

Eastern North Carolina is fortunate to have so many avenues to follow the Pirates.

I can’t wait to start my 21st season of Pirate football in September!

Send an e-mail message to Brian Bailey.

Click here to dig into Brian Bailey's Bonesville archives.

02/23/2007 01:29:35 AM

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