Take on Pirate Sports
From the Anchor Desk
Wednesday, December 22, 2004
By Brian Bailey
Holtz eyes 'Shank' for key
|Replay the audio
archive of Tuesday night's Brian Bailey Show,
featuring guest Skip Holtz:
The only person busier than Santa this Christmas is Skip Holtz.
The new Pirate coach continues to assemble a staff and those that have
already been hired are spreading the word to recruits about East Carolina
Holtz says it has been a whirlwind to start, but he hopes to take a
couple of days off around the holidays. That’s the plan, for now.
Holtz took Tuesday night to spend an hour with me on my radio/TV show on
Talk 1070 and Cable 7.
This was my second extended interview with Coach Holtz, and I came away
impressed both times. Holtz is a straight shooter. He has a plan. He wants
to win right away. He knows it won’t be easy, but the plan is in place to
find early success.
Holtz describe himself as “old school.” You know it’s really amazing; one
day you feel like you are “cool,” the next minute you are “old school.”
He has so many things to do but he certainly doesn’t want to leave any
stone unturned. While Tuesday night’s interview didn’t produce a blockbuster
announcement, we did get more information on the offensive coordinator
“Nothing is in stone yet,” Holtz said, “but I’m leaning toward naming
Coach Shank (Steve Shankweiler) as my offensive coordinator. I think it will
be a great asset to have him set up situations with me on the field. I’ll
still cal the plays for the most part, but even in that I’ll be looking for
Holtz hinted that his next couple of hires would turn heads. He wouldn’t
elaborate, but he left the studio Tuesday night to meet with one of those
candidates who was interviewing Tuesday night.
Holtz also made one thing clear about the Pirate look on game day. One
caller demanded that the team put a torch to the purple pants. Holtz says he
hopes to keep things simple.
“We really want to bring some tradition to the uniform,” Holtz said.
“Again, I’m ‘old school,’ so I want it to be simple. I would say we’ll have
East Carolina along the front in block letters. We’ll have basic block
numbers. At South Carolina we didn’t even have the names on the jerseys. We
want a good look that is basic.”
Holtz is starting his second stint as a head coach. He had things rolling
at Connecticut before he left the Huskies to coach with his Dad at South
I found his words especially touching this close to the holidays.
“We made a family decision,” Holtz explained. “I thought it was very
important for my kids to grow up seeing their grandparents on a daily basis.
Mom was struggling with throat cancer, so we made the decision to head to
Columbia to be together.
Holtz said his mother then battled several other, different cancers,
before whipping the whole bunch. He said his Dad, legendary coach Lou Holtz,
put it best.
“Dad said he started out praying for her," Holtz related, "and now he
prays to her!”
The entire hour-long Brian Bailey Show
is archived here on Bonesville.net.
You can also hear most of my earlier interview with Holtz on Christmas
Day at 3 p.m. as WNCT-TV 9 presents a special “Eye on Eastern Carolina
report, Pirate Football-Return to Glory."
Merry Christmas to all Pirate fans. Here’s hoping Santa brings lots of
great things to the purple and gold for 2005.
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02/23/2007 01:29:59 AM