ECU Football Team Holds First Practices In "Shells"

Greenville -- After a pair of introductory sessions in shorts and helmets, East Carolina moved to the next phase of fall camp donning shoulder pads for the first time as the Pirates turned in their third workout on Hight Field inside the Cliff Moore Practice Complex Wednesday morning.

With temperatures in the upper-80’s under partly cloudy skies, fifth-year head coach Ruffin McNeill guided the Pirates through a three-hour practice where fundaments and execution continued to be the theme with emphasis on ball security.

“It was the first day with shells on and we had a physical practice, which is the way we attack each day,” McNeill said. “We still have to keep working on reaching the team concept of making the squad better, and individually towards our vision. We still have a lot of work to do, but today was a good start and I’m excited to watch the film and continue to move forward in developing those two elements.”

The Pirates spent nearly 50 minutes total in seven-on-seven or team-on-team drills and 25 minutes on ball security. During breakout group sessions, the offense spent additional time with screen packages while the defensive secondary worked against potential scout team wide receivers.

“Today was about continuing to develop the mentality of the group and focus on making the team better as a whole,” McNeill added. “I’m anxious to get the team to understand that every day is important to develop their toolbox of fundamentals and today was the first time that we could actually work on those things. For me, I am always expecting perfection and I won’t shy away from that, but the kids are focused and we’re just trying to get better from one play to the next.”

ECU will return to the field Thursday morning for another session in shoulder pads leading up to its first practice in full pads on Friday.

Camp Notes:

Although ECU conducts its camp practices in the morning hours, the Pirates also engage in an hour of strength (lift) work inside the Murphy Center with coach Jeff Connors, nearly three hours of team and positional meetings, and walk-throughs at the Cliff Moore Practice Complex during the late afternoon hours.

Up Next:

Thursday's Practice Time: 8:45 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Season Opener: Aug. 30 vs. North Carolina Central (8 p.m. EST)


Scheme: Spread

Starters Returning/Lost: 6/5

Lettermen Returning/Lost: 20/15

2013 Rushing Offense: 140.1 (91/11)
2013 Passing Offense: 328.1 (11/1)
2013 Total Offense: 468.2 (25/2)
2013 Scoring Offense: 40.2 (8/2)

( ) National/Conference USA rank


Scheme: Multiple 3-4

Starters Returning/Lost: 3/8

Lettermen Returning/Lost: 24/12

2013 Rushing Defense: 116.7 (13/1)
2013 Passing Defense: 252.1 (93/13)
2013 Total Defense: 368.8 (36/6)
2013 Scoring Defense: 24.8 (49/6)

( ) National/Conference USA rank


Starters Returning/Lost: 4/2

Lettermen Returning/Lost: 5/2

2013 Field Goals/Game Average: 1.23 (39/4)
2013 Net Punting Average: 36.6 (71/4)
2013 Kickoff Return Average: 25.1 (7/1)
2013 Punt Return Average: 10.3 (39/5)

( ) National/Conference USA rank