Some do it to get ‘the weight' off of their shoulders; some do it so they can enjoy their senior year. Whatever the case may be, ECU has seen more high school standouts commit to the program of late.
July was a slow month for recruiting – only one commit joined the Pirates, it was Cardinal Gibbons (Fort Lauderdale, Florida) offensive lineman Erik Lenzen. He committed to ECU on July 1.
With August wrapping up, ECU has earned five new verbal commits bumping the class total to eleven.
Four out of the last five commits to ECU have come from the defensive end/linebacker position.
Massadiq Walton, an outside linebacker/defensive end from Ocean Lakes High School in Virginia Beach, Virginia was the first to start the frenzy of commits. He was the seventh commit for the class and made his decision on August 9.
Standing 6-foot-3 and weighing in at 260 pounds, Walton brings size to go with impressive closing speed on the defensive front.
Second to join the party was 6-foot-7 defensive end Alex Evans from Springbrook High School in Silver Spring, Maryland who committed on August 12.
Evans' size is the first thing that makes him stand out from the group. He's currently the tallest commit in the 2014 class for ECU, beating out Cardinal Gibbons (Fort Lauderdale, Florida) offensive tackle Erik Lenzen who stands at 6-foot-6.
The day after Evans' commitment, another defensive end made his decision to join the Pirates. Green Run (Virginia Beach, VA) defensive end Shaun James became the ninth commit for the 2014 Pirate class. At 6-foot-4, 235-pounds, James adds even more size to the class.
The only offensive commit from August was Middle Creek (Apex, NC) wide receiver Curtis Burston. The 6-foot-2, 210-pound receiver was the tenth commit for the class and made his decision on August 17. Burston told scout.com he'll be a great fit for ECU's offense because of its similarities to Middle Creek's offense.
2014 Robert B. Glenn High School (Kernersville, N.C) athlete Yiannis Bowden became ECU's eleventh verbal commit Thursday August 22. Bowden became ECU's fifth in-state athlete for the 2014 class. North Carolina is home to the most ECU commits with states Florida and Virginia close behind with two each.
Bowden adds even more length to the class. He stands 6-foot-6 and weighs in at 206 pounds, another defensive end with tremendous upside for strength and conditioning coach Jeff Connors to build on.
August was the month of the versatile defensive end with linebacker capabilities.
Who to watch for
Green Run (Virginia Beach, Va.) running back Anthony Scott is a player to keep an eye on. He's good friends with the ninth commit Shaun James and told Scout.com the two will likely attend the same school to play football – a great thing for the Pirates because Scott has an average 4.2 40-yard dash time. If Scott chooses the Pirates it is likely to happen soon or after his senior season.
Vincent Lowe, senior running back from Grassfield High School in Chesapeake, Virginia is an impressive playmaker. He's expected to make his official visit to East Carolina University near the start of the football season – aka soon. If he enjoys his time on campus, the Pirates could get to twelve 2014 commits within a month.
Throughout the summer, ECU has seen the ACC schools take big-time commits both in-state and out-of-state. The ACC currently has 230 commits for the 2014 class an impressive number when compared with Conference USA's 147.
Duke has fourteen commits, UNC Chapel Hill currently has twenty and N.C. State has the most in the state with twenty-two. It's safe to say the proactive coaching staff at N.C. State is seeing their hard work pay off.
Top commits are leaning toward the ACC, but with Rick Smith back at ECU and the home-opener this week, recruiting should continue to heat up for the Pirates.
Follow @InsideECUSports on Twitter for updates on certain commits that could be in attendance for the home-opener Saturday against Old Dominion.