East Carolina Football Spring Practice Update

Courtesy of Tom McClellan East Carolina University SID…….


Pirates Return To Work After First Scrimmage


GREENVILLE, N.C. – Two days after competing in their first intra-squad scrimmage of
the spring, the East Carolina Pirates returned to work inside the Cliff Moore
Complex and turned in a lively 110-minute practice in shorts, shoulder pads and
helmets Monday afternoon.

Although third-year head coach Ruffin McNeill and his staff completed full game-tape
evaluations earlier in the day, thoughts of the video content remained consistent
with their initial observations Saturday at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium.

“To be honest, I thought it wasn’t bad for two weeks of work,” McNeill said after
reviewing the abbreviated 54-play contest. “I was pleased with the execution,
especially for a first scrimmage, and saw many guys who did the fundamental things
really well. I’m also encouraged about the progress I saw in our installment

Monday’s session was ECU’s ninth of the spring period, leaving just six more
sessions remaining, including a second Saturday morning scrimmage later this week
and the playing of the Purple-Gold Game April 14.

Although conducted in shells with the absence of hard contact, the Pirates’
period-by-period schedule didn’t deviate from McNeill’s established norm this
spring. East Carolina spent its final hour engaged in five segments that covered
special teams, seven-on-seven skeleton drills and an 11-on-11 team segment.

“I know I keep saying this, but the competitive spirit of this team really impresses
me,” McNeill said. “The ‘no complain, no excuse’ mentality has defined them to this
point and that has allowed us, collectively, to remain focused and get a lot of work

“One of the objectives every spring is to develop depth at all positions and,
offensively, we’ve been able to do that on the line and running back positions
especially. It’s also been very competitive up front and in the secondary on
defense, and when you have those battles every day, quality depth is usually the

NOTES: The Pirates took 33 snaps during the team-on-team session (17 passes, 16
rushes) … While the ECU defense provided another dose of pressure with protective
quick-whistle sacks by sophomore end Terry Biles and outside linebackers Montese
Overton (redshirt freshman), Maurice Falls (sophomore) and Desi Brown (sophomore),
the offensive unit responded with a pair of touchdowns and several big plays during
the period … Junior quarterback Rio Johnson hit junior outside receiver Reese
Wiggins on a 35-yard scoring toss, while junior running back Michael Dobson reached
the endzone from 10 yards out … Johnson also completed a 23-yarder to sophomore
inside receiver Justin Hardy and senior running back Reggie Bullock broke loose for
an 18-yard ground gain … Brown, who opened spring drills on the two-deep at strong
safety, has experienced action at both outside linebacking positions in the last

Next Workout: Wednesday, April 4 (3:30-5:50 p.m.)
Remaining Workouts: April 6, April 7 (scrimmage), April 9, April 11 and April 14
(Purple-Gold Game, 2:30 p.m.)

Categorized as College