ON PIRATE SPORTS
From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
By Brian Bailey
All rights reserved.
For many, including me,
this may be a once in a lifetime deal.
The Pirates are heading to our
50th state for their postseason party. East Carolina will take on Western
Athletic Conference power Boise State in the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl.
I had a chance to check out
practice on Sunday morning. As I walked up to the practice field I could
tell that this wasn’t just any practice. This was the team’s first workout
since the announcement that the Pirates would be playing in Honolulu.
It was a lively workout. The
team is genuinely excited. Somehow, though, this squad has to figure out a
way to stay focused on the game at hand. That won’t be easy in the tropical
“We had a very spirited
practice today,” said East Carolina coach Skip Holtz on Sunday after the
workout. “We’ve waited a whole week to find out where we would go and we’re
thrilled that we’ll be going to Hawaii.”
Holtz knows that many on this
team may never have an opportunity like this again.
“I know the guys are really
excited,” Holtz said. “This will be a once in a lifetime experience for many
of our guys. I think they’ll really enjoy the attention, and the chance to
share in some of the Hawaiian cultures. I’ve had a chance to go over there a
couple of times and it will give them a chance to experience the luaus, to
see Pearl Harbor, to see Aloha Stadium, where this game and the Pro Bowl is
played every year.
"There is just so much.”
Think about just how far this
senior class has come. Those that were redshirted five years ago have gone
from three wins in two seasons to back-to-back bowl trips.
Josh Coffman says he wants to
try surfing while on the trip.
“I’ve tried it before,” said
Coffman. “But it has been a while. I think it would be fun.”
Coffman says the team can
enjoy the experience and still stay focused on the actual football game.
“Yeah, I think we should have
a lot of fun early in the week,” Coffman explained. “Then we’ll really
concentrate on the game.”
Quarterback Rob Kass agreed
that the toughest part about the bowl assignment will be concentrating on
“We’re all really excited,”
said Kass. “We know it will be fun, but we also know that we’re on a trip to
win a football game.”
Winning that game certainly
won’t be easy. Boise State brings a national ranking to the Hawaii Bowl.
Last year the Broncos were the nation’s darlings in the bowl season after
that thrilling win over Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl.
Boise State will certainly be
favored. The Broncos lost to Hawaii for the WAC title just last month in
There isn’t much time to get
ready. The Pirates will leave on December 17th. The team will take much of
this week off for exams, before gearing up again just before the trip.
They’ll have to do most of
their work in Greenville.
I’ve got a feeling that
practices in paradise won’t be all that intense.
Huge win for Coach Mack
A big congratulations to Coach
Mack McCarthy and the Pirate hoopsters for their win over George Mason on
What a way to open one of
the biggest weeks in ECU basketball history. Clemson comes to town on
Wednesday night, followed by a visit by North Carolina State.
I had a chance to see the win
over Mason on MASN on DirecTV. I didn’t recognize this team.
They played with such poise
and composure, especially when they gave up the lead early in the second
half. This is a team that could have just as easily felt sorry for itself
and given up in the second half.
The Pirates didn’t, and that
speaks volumes for what Coach McCarthy is all about. Coach Mack’s resume
tells the story of a winning coach.
Coach Mack took a big step
towards keeping this job with the win over the Patriots.
Send an e-mail message to
Click here to dig into Brian Bailey's Bonesville
12/04/2007 02:10:31 AM