Nichol Disappointed With Offense in Scrimmage

ECU completed its first summer scrimmage on Saturday but the Pirates offense struggled mightily. Dave Nichol expressed his disappointment in the performance.

GREENVILLE N.C. — East Carolina offensive coordinator Dave Nichol expressed a frustration with the Pirate offense, following the team’s first scrimmage of the summer.

The Saturday scrimmage, which was hosted inside Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium, was closed to fans and media but according to the first-year coordinator, the Pirates failed to impress on offense.

“We we’re real average,” Nichol bluntly stated after the scrimmage. “The defense is always ahead early in camp but we don’t care. Bad is bad and it was. It was average to below average, I would say.”

Nichol noted that the offense failed to play “11 man football” but was quick to point to similar concerns that popped up during last year’s scrimmage with senior quarterback Shane Carden leading the way.

“It’s a little bit of everything,” Nichol said. “Getting signals, timing getting thrown off. It’s universal with all the guys but we’ll work through it.”

Junior quarterback Blake Kemp echoed the sentiment of his coordinator, adding that the Pirates failed to hit throws at the time. The signal caller said that the Pirates scored on their first two possessions but failed to muster much outside of the initial two drives.

Kemp is currently in a three-way battle for the starting signal caller spot alongside Cody Keith and Kurt Benkert but none of the three came out of the scrimmage with a strong grasp on the starting spot.

While ECU coaches would probably prefer to find a go-to guy behind center, it doesn’t appear as though the battle will end any time soon and Nichol noted that no quarterback made a jump in the scrimmage. That won’t affect too much in terms of who will start going into the season opener, though.

“This scrimmage is just one thing we evaluate (the quarterbacks on),” Nichol said. “It’s still early and we’re just going to kind of take it day by day. There really isn’t a hard timeline but we’ll communicate with each other.”

With just six summer practices remaining before the season-opening matchup with Towson on Sept. 5, Nichol and the Pirate offense will have to improve mightily.

“I think the effort was there but it was just execution,” Nichol said. “I think our guys tried to play hard but that’s just one small part of it.”

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