ECU starting quarterback Gardner Minshew departs for family matter

GREENVILLE, N.C. - ECU senior starting quarterback Gardner Minshew has officially withdrawn from school to devote his full attention to a family matter in his home state of Mississippi, head coach Scottie Montgomery announced late Tuesday afternoon.

“Our full support is for Gardner and his family during this time,” Montgomery said. “He's been an asset and leader in our program, but our first priority is to be there for him today, tomorrow and the days afterward. The door will certainly remain open for his return to ECU, and when it's appropriate for us to talk about football again, we will do so.”

Minshew, who earned a bachelor's degree in communication after the fall semester, was designated by Montgomery as the Pirates' starting quarterback heading into spring drills later this month.

The Brandon, Miss. native started five of 10 games during the 2017 season. He led ECU in completions (174), attempts (304), passing yards (2,140) and passing touchdowns (16) as a junior. Minshew established school and American Athletic Conference single-game records with a 52-of-68, 463-yard performance at Houston on Nov. 4.

After leading Northwest Mississippi Community College to the 2015 NJCAA National Championship, Minshew transferred to ECU and played in seven games during the 2016 campaign as a sophomore.