ECU knows it needs to play its best game against ODU to come out with victory

Kickoff Saturday at 6 PM
ECU eyeing for first win of the year against confident ODU squad
Published: Sep. 10, 2022 at 12:26 AM EDT
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GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - ECU hosts Old Dominion on Saturday at 6 PM. They activated updated heat management protocols meaning you may bring two 20-ounce unopened water bottles, they will have more EMS at the stadium, cooling fans, and increased water at the stadium. Please prepare for the heat before gametime. As for kickoff, the Pirates are hoping to bounce back from their tough loss to N.C. state week one.

“Oh yeah they’ve turned the page,” says ECU head football coach Mike Houston,. “It’s good we got a game. That’s the great thing we get a chance to go back out this Saturday. Flush everything out of your system and go out and compete against a good opponent.”

A missed field goal to win has been a tough pill to swallow but the Pirates took a lot away from the experience.

“There’s magic in this stadium,” says ECU offensive coordinator Donnie Kirkpatrick, “I promise if you hang in there we will be back in this thing with a chance to win.”

“It was a new experience for me,” says ECU tight end Shane Calhoun, “I feel like the crowd helped feed the team, feed off the energy and it helped us play pretty well.”

The Pirates praised heavily despite the loss to the13th ranked team in the land. It sounds like some might have listened to the praises.

“They have that confidence and they have that mentality they can play with anybody in the nation. That is what you want,” says ECU defensive coordinator Blake Harrell, “But we have to go earn that everyday. You can’t just go out there Saturdays and say hey this is what we are going to be. You better be that way on Tuesday and Wednesday as well.”

“Coach Houston has built a process here. A standard we don’t fall back from and he expects every day at practice,” says ECU center Avery Jones, “So keeping that same type of hype, but you gotta do that every week to compete.”

There are no weeks off.

“They are every bit as good as anyone in the country,” says Kirkpatrick, “They got some good guys up front. They got a defensive end that scares us to death he is a speed rusher.”

Their opponent Old Dominion just knocked off Virginia Tech in their opener.

" Virginia Tech they played pretty well defensively,” says Harrell, “I think 240 yards total offense probably 150 yards before the last drive.”

Mike Houston knows the Monarchs well.

“A lot of these kids are from the state of Virginia, there’s a lot from the state of North Carolina. We crossover in recruiting a good bit against ODU. So, we both know our rosters pretty good,” Houston says, “I know several of their coaches. You are 2 hours away so regionally we know them pretty well and they are going to know us pretty well.”

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