Through a source very close to ECU head football coach Skip Holtz, WITN first broke the story that Holtz has turned down a job offer to become the head coach at Syracuse.
When asked if Holtz did indeed turn down the job Holtz responded to WITN sports director Billy Weaver by stating "It's true."
The AutoZone Liberty Bowl will be hosting a press conference today, Thursday, December 11, from 3:30pm to 4:30 pm Central Time.
East Carolina head coach Skip Holtz and Kentucky head coach Rich Brooks will participate in the press conference.
Stay tuned to WITN and witn.com for the latest from Memphis, Tennessee.
Here's the official release from East Carolina University:
GREENVILLE, N.C. - East Carolina Head Football Coach Skip Holtz announced Thursday that he has withdrawn his name from consideration and declined further discussions regarding the head football coaching position at Syracuse University.
Holtz, who led the Pirates to a 27-24 victory over Tulsa to earn the program's first Conference USA Championship Saturday, provided closure to the situation prior to a scheduled AutoZone Liberty Bowl press conference in Memphis Thursday afternoon.
"While it is always flattering for others to have an interest in your abilities, I simply am too focused on our preparations for the bowl game and many other of our short and long-term goals to fairly evaluate what I feel is a promising situation at Syracuse." Holtz said. "I appreciate Syracuse's interest but that certainly is a direct reflection on what our players, coaches and the Pirate Nation have been able to accomplish, especially through a season that featured so much adversity."
Holtz has directed East Carolina to a 9-4 record in 2008, the program's highest single-season win total since 1999. The Pirates will meet Southeastern Conference-member Kentucky in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl Jan. 2 vying for their 10th victory, which would be a first for ECU in a season since the 1991 campaign.