The Pirates will have a handfull of taented signal callers to turn to such as Cody Keith, Kurt Benkert and Jonothon Weymann, who impressed many during scrimmages this spring. However, the coaching staff will be looking to recruit a few more for the pool of offensive talent next season.
Shawnee (OK) quarterback John Jacobs is ECU's lone quarterback commit for 2015 thus far. He is a diverse athlete who's committment is largely based on his confidence in ECU's coaches to best utilize his skills. The 6-foot-1, 211-pounder runs a 4.49 40-yard dash, so he has potential as a dual-threat quarterback. Being able to either pick out a target down field, hand the ball off to a running back or simply take it and run himself should add plenty of versatility to ECU's offense.
After pledging to the Pirates back in May, Jacobs told Inside ECU Sports that he's training to become a better athlete. By the time his senior season is said and done and he's ready to head to Greenville, he should be a well-rounded, dual-threat asset.
Even with Jacobs already set to join the team, ECU is looking to procure another quarterback from this class. There are a few targets left on the list, so Inside ECU Sports takes a look at them and breaks down the Pirates' two most important quarterback candidates in 2015.
Newnan (Ga.) quarterback Bailey Bryant
Bryant is, without a doubt, the top signal-caller left on ECU's radar. While Jacobs could thrive because of his upside as a dual-threat player, Bryant could thrive as an ECU quarterback because of his familiarity with Lincoln Riley's "Air Raid" spread offense. He led a spread offense for three of his four years and is admittedly more of a pass-oriented quarterback.
When Inside ECU Sports spoke with Bryant in mid-July, he was even able to draw some comparisons between himself and Carden. Not only is he also confident in his ability to throw in the pocket and accurately hit his targets down field, but he's also a leader of his team, much like Carden is for the Pirates.
Marshall, Mississippi State and Missouri are some other schools that have been pursuing Bryant. He feels like he fits into ECU's system well, though, so that Pirates certainly have a chance to land him. He's going to try to make it to Greenville in the fall to see the school and get a feel for the game-day atmosphere in Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium.
South Florence (SC) quarterback Nick Jones
None of the schools recruiting Jones have extended him an offer, but he attracted plenty of attention with a breakout performance his junior year. The 6-foot, 205-pound quarterback threw for 2,760 yards and 37 touchdowns. He also showed some skill with his legs by rushing for another 370 yards and 13 touchdowns.
With Jones at the helm, South Florence's offense was one of the most potent in South Carolina. His strengths include his leadership and his ability to find almost any target anywhere on the field. With the kind of talent that yields 37 passing touchdowns in a season, he could have some fun with the kind of receivers ECU cultivates.
Many programs are waiting to see how Jones follows up such a stellar junior campaign. Should he impress in his first few games this season, the offers could come flooding in.