New Season, New Offense

Another ECU football season is less than two weeks off, and fans, players and coaches alike are looking for redemption.

Coming off the program's most dismal season ever one thing is virtually certain, it can't get any worse, especially with Army still on the schedule. Just what will 2004 bring to a program down on its luck and bound for a new, yet not improved Conference-USA?

Entering his second year captaining the pirate ship, head coach John Thompson is touting his team's attitude of ‘togetherness'. At the annual media day event last week, Thompson alluded to last year's struggles in stating, "We are all 100 percent together. It's not offense versus defense and I think our team knows that. We have competitiveness but we are together as a team. These guys stuck together last year as a team."

The Pirates will need all the togetherness than can muster when they open up on the road September 4th at West Virginia. The Mountaineers are ranked as high as 11th in some preseason polls and pummeled the Pirates last year at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium 48-7.

This year's Pirate offense, under the direction of new offensive coordinator Noah Brindise should be more prolific. Brindise has implemented a "fun and gun" attack similar to that of Florida in the Steve Spurrier era. Speaking about his offense, Brindise says, "Offensively I think we have gotten a lot better. We are still in the process of trying to fine tune what we do, but our passing game is coming around pretty good." In last Saturday's controlled scrimmage, the offense totaled over 400 yards in the air.

Running Brindise's offense will be James Pinkney, a sophomore who in four games last season completed 43 of 87 pass attempts for 3 touchdowns. Pinkney beat out former starter Desmond Robinson and transfer Patrick Dosh for the spot, however coach Thompson will not be reluctant to change the rotation if need be. On the subject Thomson said, "Our situation at quarterback is somewhat settled. That doesn't mean that Desmond or Patrick or any of those guys won't step up and be the quarterback but right now we know who the quarterback is."


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