ECU Back To Work After Day Off

GREENVILLE, N.C. - After turning in their first scrimmage of the season Saturday and following with an off-day Sunday, East Carolina Head Football Coach Skip Holtz and the Pirates returned to work Monday with a pair of sessions on Hight Field inside the Cliff Moore Practice Complex.

The twin outings marked the second of three two-a-day practices scheduled during preseason camp. In all, ECU has eight more workouts remaining, including Saturday's scrimmage, prior to the start of classes Aug. 20.

Holtz reaffirmed his evaluation stance after Saturday's scrimmage, noting it was designed to make personnel decisions and put people in the right place to enhance two-deep repetitions and initiate schematic work as the season opener against Virginia Tech approaches.

"I'm pleased with the progress we're making as a team," Holtz said. "There was a lot of energy and spirit out there for our second two-a-day and I think that's certainly a positive as we're working to get into game shape. There are some bumps and bruises but guys are playing through it pretty well.

"I think Saturday (scrimmage) gave us a pretty good idea of who we're working with - guys who will play and those who we would like to redshirt," Holtz added. "I've said it before, but there are a lot of people competing out there and we're about at the point where we'll start working on schemes for Virginia Tech. We need to determine how to highlight our strengths and hide our weaknesses."

The Pirates will return to a single workout schedule for the rest of the week leading up to the playing of the program's second scrimmage Saturday afternoon, which will determine the depth chart heading into official game preparation efforts for the matchup against the Hokies Aug. 30. The contest will be followed by the 14th Annual Meet The Pirates Night, ECU's preseason football fanfest, which will begin at 6:00 p.m. at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium.

NOTES: ECU closed out the shells-only morning practice with two-minute drills while the evening session, which was held in full pads, finished with a goal-line walk-through ... Similar to the initial two-a-day last Wednesday, the morning workout stressed the passing game while ECU's rushing attack was once again addressed under the lights ... Senior DE Marcus Hands returned to action Monday, participating in individual drills and working with the No. 3 unit while trying to bounce back from a nagging shoulder injury ... Junior OL Sean Allen moved over from guard and took snaps at the center position filling in for senior Fred Hicks who sat out Monday's pair of practices with ankle soreness ... Senior LB Pierre Bell did not dress in full gear during the evening session for precautionary reasons (shoulder) ... One phase of camp will come to a close Tuesday morning as the Pirates will check out of their preseason dorm rooms and move into their regular season lodging accommodations ... Tuesday's Practice Time: 6:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.; Season Opener: Aug. 30 vs. Virginia Tech (12 noon) in Charlotte, N.C. (Bank of America Stadium).