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Herrion era ending

From ECU and staff reports

(Update >>> code ECX BKB5)

Bill Herrion was informed Tuesday that East Carolina intends to replace him as its head basketball coach at the end of the season.

The university confirmed in an afternoon press release that athletic director Terry Holland met with Herrion earlier in the day and asked him to step down from the position he has held since succeeding Joe Dooley in 1999.

Holland asked Herrion to accept another job within ECU's athletic department, said the release, which noted that senior associate AD Nick Floyd was also present at the meeting.

Going into Wednesday's home game against Conference USA foe Southern Mississippi, Herrion's overall record with the Pirates is 69-96 and his league mark is 16-45. None of the teams in his six years on the job has had a winning record, though his 2000-01 squad broke even with a 14-14 mark.

"Nick Floyd (ECU Senior Associate Athletics Director) and I met with Coach Herrion Tuesday morning and asked him to relinquish the head basketball coaching position at the end of this season to work with a major fund raising initiative for ECU Athletics," Holland said in a statement. "As you can imagine, it was a very emotional meeting for all concerned and we asked Coach Herrion to take some time before responding."

So far this season, the Pirates are 8-17 overall. They are mired in 13th place in C-USA with a 3-10 record, one notch above cellar dweller Southern Miss, and face a virtual must-win situation against the Golden Eagles Wednesday night to stay in the thick of the battle with 11th-place South Florida and 12th-place Tulane to secure spots among the 12 teams that will be invited to the 14-team league's postseason tournament.

"The timing of the meeting was intended to eliminate the game-to-game pressure that we felt was a negative for everyone involved," Holland stated. "Any further comments will have to come from Coach Herrion until the season is over."

Indications are that Herrion will coach the remainder of the season and may accept the assignment to the fundraising position, according to a source, though Herrion's strong ties in the coaching profession and his successful track record prior to coming to ECU will likely result in other coaching opportunities.

A 1981 graduate of Merrimack College, Herrion put in stints as an assistant at Boston University (1985-90) and George Washington (1990-91) before serving as head coach at Drexel from 1991 until taking the reigns of the Pirates in 1999.

Herrion compiled a 121-32 record at Drexel and led the Dragons to three NCAA tournament berths and an NIT appearance. Herrion's 1995-96 team advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament.

Page updated: 02/23/07 11:44 AM

©2005 Brian Bailey contributed to this report. All rights rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Compiled from ECU Athletics and staff reports.


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