When the Pirates found out that standout wide receiver Davon Grayson would not be eligible for the 2016 season, they needed someone to step up and fill some big shoes on offense.
Jimmy Williams has made the most of his opportunity and has emerged as one of the team's top playmakers.
Through East Carolina's first five games, Williams has 19 receptions for 467 yards and three touchdowns. He is also averaging and impressive 24.6 yards per catch.
Aside from his impressive statistics, the Pirates are relying on his senior leadership to get through some adversity and to get the season back on track after dropping three straight games.
“It’s ten times more important right now because that’s what guys really need," said Williams. "You’re going to have people wanting to turn on each other, but you’ve got to keep people together and that’s what we’ve got to do. We’ve got to keep everybody together.”
Williams went on to say that the team's mood after the UCF loss obviously wasn't a good, but that they know what they need to do and that they are eager to improve.
“After a loss (the locker room) is always going to be down," he said. "We’ve got the same mindset that we always have -- that we have to get better.”
With seven regular season games remaining for the Pirates, they will need Williams to continue to step up and he is ready for the challenge.
“I'm going to work harder, I'm going to push everybody else harder, and I'm going to make sure I take care of my body to get through the season," he said. "I'm just going to do everything that it takes to make this team better.”