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From the Anchor Desk
Tuesday, July 28, 2008

By Brian Bailey

Signs of grid season cropping up all over

By Brian Bailey
All rights reserved.

East Carolina coach Skip Holtz spent his Monday in Memphis playing golf and representing East Carolina at Conference USA’s football kickoff.

Conference USA saved on expenses by just bringing the coaches in. The coaches played in a golf tournament yesterday. The AutoZone Liberty Bowl Golf Outing benefitted St. Jude Hospital in Memphis.

The coaches and players will be a part of an interactive video teleconference on Thursday. To save on expenses, each coach and a player will conduct a video teleconference on their own individual campus.

Coach Holtz and C-USA preseason defensive player of the year C.J. Wilson will speak to the media from Joyner Library on East Carolina’s campus at noon to kick off the event.

You can access the interviews on the Conference USA web site at

East Carolina is the pick to win the East Division of the league in voting by members of the media that cover teams in the league. Houston was the pick to win the West, and the Cougars got the slight edge over East Carolina in voting for the overall conference champion.

The calendar really cranks up when we turn the page over to August for Pirate football.

On Saturday, as local high schools get set to open camp, East Carolina will host its annual women’s clinic.

If you are a female and a football fan, this would be the best thirty dollars you could spend.

Coach Holtz and his staff do a great job with the clinic. I’ve covered it a couple of times, including last year, and saw nothing but smiles from the ladies. There are two groups, one for beginners and one for the experienced fans. Each lady receives a football survival kit as part of the clinic.

All questions are welcome, and some of them are really funny. Last year one of the ladies asked about a receiver going in motion. She asked if he was going to end up on that side, why didn’t he just start over there. She had a point.

The entire squad reports to camp on August 6th. Summer camp is a real grind, but the very start of camp is always filled with anticipation and enthusiasm.

Media day is set for Saturday, Aug. 8. It always seems like media day is a little early, with just one day of practice completed. However, teams have so much work to do that most coaches want to get as many of the media responsibilities out of the way as possible.

Camp really gets going on Wednesday, Aug. 12 with the start of two-a-day practices. The season opener is the light at the end of the tunnel. Players often think that light is the train, but playing on Saturday is the carrot that gets most of the guys through the rigors of camp.

The first scrimmage of the summer is on Saturday, Aug. 15. The Pirates will conduct scrimmages on the next Saturday as well, and then complete the scrimmage part of the summer with their final scrimmage on the last Friday of August.

The scrimmages are very different in nature. One of the early scrimmages is to look at many of the younger players, to try and see which of those will make the travel squad and possibly work on special teams.

The vets work more in the second scrimmage, while the finale is a basic walk-through to get set for the season opener.

East Carolina will host Appalachian State at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium on Sept. 5 at noon.

Usually the summer is a long drag. Maybe it was East Carolina’s run in the baseball regionals that shortened the summer, but it seems like it has flown by.

The best time of the year is quickly approaching.


E-mail Brian Bailey.

Brian Bailey's archives.

07/28/2009 02:36:25 AM


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