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From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
By Brian Bailey

"Pulmonary Pirates" live on the edge

By Brian Bailey
All rights reserved.


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Bailey: "Pulmonary Pirates" live on the edge
BVL: BCS Standings
O'Brien: Defense keeps ECU vulnerable
BVL: Denny O'Brien's weekly Harris Poll ballot

Those “Pulmonary Pirates” are at it again. You know, the team that takes your breath away in every game.

Saturday night’s thriller will go down as one of the most exciting victories in East Carolina’s football history.

Most of us, including yours truly, were relegated to watching the game on TV with friends and other Pirate fans, instead of seeing it in person.

According to the people I talked to, every place that showed the game had overflow crowds on Saturday night. That, in itself, is a testament to the support this team continues to get.

Again, the Pirates certainly didn’t disappoint. Rob Kass threw an absolute bullet on the last play of regulation, sending the game to overtime. ECU then won it on a Kass quarterback sneak in OT.

The “Pulmonary Pirates” had done it again!

“I like that,” said Pirate coach Skip Holtz on Monday, referring to the ‘Pulmonary Pirates’ phrase. “It’s a good thing that we are developing this heart center in Greenville! When you look at these games that we have played, it has been one heck of a season.

"I think it speaks volumes for these players, because we haven’t been perfect, but we have fought to stay in games and then win some.”

It’s almost like a broken record. Every game seems to have it’s own emotional importance.

Now comes North Carolina State. The Wolfpack is just 1-5, but you had better believe that this is a team that will come to Greenville and like nothing more then to wreck the Pirate party.

Coach Holtz said that last season's N.C. State team was as talented as any team his squad faced all year. He also made a great point about the Wolfpack schedule.

“You look and see who they have played and you understand just how tough their schedule is,” said Holtz. “I told our players that our record might just be close to 1-5 if we had played that schedule. They’ve lined up and played good teams like Clemson, Florida State, Louisville…”

State also lost on the road at Boston College, a program currently ranked in the Top 5 in the nation.

This will be the Wolfpack's second trip to Greenville. The 1999 game featured the largest crowd in Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium history at 50,092. East Carolina won that game 23-6, led by current Jacksonville Jaguars starting quarterback David Garrard.

North Carolina State leads in the all-time series with ECU 14-10, but the Pirates have won five of the last seven games between the two teams.

Coach Holtz says his team wants to be the best in North Carolina. He hopes to follow the win over UNC-Chapel Hill with a victory over the Wolfpack.

“That’s certainly not taking anything away from Duke or Wake Forest,” said Holtz. “We don’t have them on our schedule. We do have a chance now to go 2-0 in the state.

“This is a big game for the players, the coaches, the fans… So many ECU fans work with N.C. State graduates in Greenville, and the same in Raleigh. It should be an electric atmosphere, for sure.”

The Pirates are a four-point favorite. The game is a sellout, but you can catch it on CSTV.

It should be another good one.

Take a deep breath because you may need it. The “Pulmonary Pirates” are ready to go again.


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04/21/2008 07:04:08 PM


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