WRAL: NC State and ECU play three times from 2010-16

Several gems in this article, so make sure to read the whole thing. The following is really interesting:

“We play them in ’10, ’13, and ’16, and we haven’t scheduled any further out than that,” said (Lee) Fowler. “We had more games over those six years and I think Skip (Holtz) and Terry (Holland) got together and said, ‘We’ve got to make sure we can win and do some things properly’, so I think they wanted to back off every other year or every year, home and away”

There are a few FACTS that you should know:

(1) Chuck Amato did NOT like the series with ECU and did NOT want to play the games. Early in Amato’s tenure, Fowler’s insistence of scheduling ECU was a source of contention between the two.

(2) Tom O’Brien also does NOT like playing the game with ECU.

Regardless of your personal perspective of the value/importance of scheduling football games with ECU, this stuff is damn good/funny. I don’t think Fowler is savy enough to understand what he is saying or doing; but those of us who have experienced this rivalry since the 1980s can’t help but love to see NC State turn the political tides on ECU and make a big deal out of this situation (as Fowler describes it).

We could talk about the reasons for this all day long…and surely have done so in old entries. But, I don’t have time to type it all today.

The late, great Jim Valvano terminated NC State’s scheduling of East Carolina after Pirate fans tore down goal posts and the playing surface at Carter-Finley in the ugly incident of 1987; AFTER NC State’s athletics administration had publicly warned ECU and Pirate fans after two consecutive years of minor vandalisms to the stadium.

Regardless of the obvious justification that it was no longer prudent for NC State to host East Carolina, ECU fans took the opportunity to turn the action into a publicity battle claiming that ‘NC State was scared to play ECU’. Those of you who have a long-term perspective built on actual personal experiences in the late 1980s and 1990s remember that ECU took this a step forward with a public campaign built around how the Pirates weren’t scared of anyone and would “Play anyone…anywhere…anytime.”

You need to look no further than East Carolina’s avoidance of scheduling a series with Appalachian State in recent years to see how their old mantra hasn’t held true for a long time. In addition to the excitement on the field, such a series would be a major boon to the economies of both Eastern and Western North Carolina. The Pirates’ decision to deprive the public of this fanastically compelling series with ASU – and the North Carolina State Legislature’s avoidance of the the topic – has been very disappointing. But, it is now consistent with Lee Fowler’s public statement that ECU is scared to play NC State on an annual basis.

Oh, the irony.

God I hope Fowler INTENDS to piss off the ECU people and knows what he is doing. If not, I wouldn’t be surprised for Terry Holland and Skip Holtz to publicly call his bluff on some of this.

“I think, truthfully, we expect to beat East Carolina on a year-in year-out basis,” Fowler told WRAL. “To us, it wouldn’t be that big an upset.”

General NC State Administration NCS Football Quotes of Note

77 Responses to WRAL: NC State and ECU play three times from 2010-16

  1. jaybird80 09/24/2008 at 11:21 AM #

    Well, playing the pirates 3 times in six years is better that every year, it is still not the ideal schedule of “never.”

  2. packpigskinfan23 09/24/2008 at 11:28 AM #

    That is not even the worse thing to come out of Lee Fowler’s mouth in the past few days. Check out some of his quotes on reasons to raise student fees to go to athletics.


    “We have to be competitive with Chapel Hill, who’s right above us.”

    “I just like to be on a level playing field with UNC, so that’s why I think it’s very important to us,” Fowler said. “We’re supposed to compete with them, but they’ve had [greater support from student fees] for three or four years now. They’ve been able to get a lot of things done in the last three or four years that we have not been able to.”

    Why are we so worried about competing with UNC in $$$ situations, but not in athletic competitions?!

    SFN: Why shouldn’t student fees be raised to what is market for similar institutions? We’ve been a supporter of this idea for years.

  3. packpigskinfan23 09/24/2008 at 11:29 AM #

    and what about the Wolfpack club generating more cash then the Rams Club?!

  4. statered 09/24/2008 at 11:29 AM #

    this guy should be a radio personlity, not an AD. Not once have a ever heard him communicate a vision for our athletics department that I think he actually believes in.

  5. redfred2 09/24/2008 at 11:37 AM #

    “Why are we so worried about competing with UNC in $$$ situations, but not in athletic competitions?!”

    C’mon ppsf23, you know that MONEY is the ONLY motivator in Raleigh.

  6. gopack05 09/24/2008 at 11:53 AM #

    NC State has everything to lose in scheduling the Pirates and nothing to gain. When is there going to be a wake up call? Are we really “rivals”? I don’t even like to think of us being in the same class as them. They are an overrated bunch of thugs and rednecks. Come on, wake up Fowler!

  7. whitefang 09/24/2008 at 11:59 AM #

    Loved watching the ECU game on my DVR last night (recorded from ESPN late night) because I was in a dove field Sat and could only get score updates. BUT the only way we should be playing ECU is either because we cannot schedule anyone else (not likely) or in the Chic-Fil-A bowl. We have everything to loose and little to gain I believe.
    And Fowler is still a buffoon. Unfortuately he is currently OUR buffoon.

  8. phillypacker 09/24/2008 at 12:12 PM #

    Wolfpack Club members are you reading this nonsense from Fowler? Aren’t you tired of getting so little, not only in terms of performance, but in basic competence from this guy? He’s an embarrassment.

  9. packof81 09/24/2008 at 12:21 PM #

    I’m mighty glad we beat them i-rate Pi-rates but we shouldn’t play them. It can only hurt not help.

  10. thekind 09/24/2008 at 12:40 PM #

    Fowler is an idiot, who by the way, would rather politic Holland rather than do what is right for our program.

    State has no business playing at ECU. Why make their delusional, prop-48 team relevant.
    Let them continue playing the Tulanes of the world in front of 10k fans.

    Hey Folwer, shut your pie hole and do what is right for our program for a change!

  11. jasondeans 09/24/2008 at 12:48 PM #

    doesn’t the state legislature mandate ncsu and unc to play ecu??

  12. gcpack 09/24/2008 at 12:51 PM #

    Whitefang we cannot play ECU in the ChikFilA Bowl because that is reserved for SEC & ACC mathups.

    I am one of those who has seen practically all of the home games with ECU and the ridiculous visit to Charlotte. I refuse to go to Greenville and subject myself to that expected behavior we have all become used to from some of the ECU fans.

    I remember that State gave ECU a second chance after they mowed down the hedges and got into fights with police. They were duly warned, the series was suspended for one year and then we let them back on the schedule.

    In the renewal game when it became apparent that ECU would win the ECU cheerleaders(who ARE official representatives of the school) went to the then grass bank and motioned for the rabid ECU fans there to come down to the field which they did, torn down the fence and proceeded to repeat their hooliganism of two years prior.

    They couldn’t blame it on high school kids from Cary(As they did 2 yrs earlier). They were at fault and continue to whine that State dropped them because they won. BULL.

    UNC dropped them after two games because ECU got very competitive in the ’70’s. That’s who the ECU crowd needs to bitch to.

    I dont care to ever give Caulton(I want to be a Tar Heel) Tudor(N&0)any cudos but his article a few days ago explaining that ECU should be grateful to State for continuing to schedule them even after that first upset in the early ’70’s was right on the mark.

    One other funny ECU note. For years I have worked with clients in eastern NC(they are very nice people there) and many who are ECU fans have the large framed picture of the ECU player stretching the ball over the goal line to win the ’92 Peach Bowl. Many ECUers still believe this is their GREATEST victory. (How pathetic is that to have your best win over a program whose historical win percentage is barely over .500) I couldn’t help but get great satisfaction of Andre busting through the ECU defense and stretching the ball over the goal line to beat the purpies.

    That was nice but doesn’t come close to any of our greatest victories. Would love to hear from any readers on what they think is State’s greatest single football win.
    I will go with the Gator Bowl win over Notre Dame.

  13. BJD95 09/24/2008 at 12:55 PM #

    I’m glad that TOB agrees with my position on playing ECU. Does absolutely nothing for us other than raise our security costs and probably our insurance premiums.

  14. Noah 09/24/2008 at 1:08 PM #

    I honestly don’t care who we play. LSU, ECU, App. State…whoever.

    My problem with the ECU game is that we initially got blackmailed into playing it.

    If NCSU makes the determination that they don’t want to play ECU, the NC Gen. Assembly has no role in it. The AD at NCSU is responsible for the well-being of NCSU’s athletics. He or she should not give two craps what happens to ECU.

    And I still say that any legislator that’s going to withhold funding over football scheduling should be run out of town on a rail. If I were the AD, I’d never stop making a stink about it. I’d never stop campaigning against him or her. I’d go to every booster club meeting in the state and I’d have the same 10 minute spiel against them. Their opponents in the primary and the general would view me as a non-stop negative commercial.

    Our response should be: We will not be held hostage on football scheduling by the NC Gen. Assembly. Period. The end.

  15. choppack1 09/24/2008 at 1:17 PM #

    We’ve won 3 of the last 4 of these games. If the trend continues – or improves – it will be interesting to see if they want to keep on playing us.

    I don’t have a problem w/ playing ECU…it’s definitely fun to beat them – and I actually think that their fans have improved a good bit. (Of course, we sure haven’t lost to them much recently.) I’m w/ Noah though – legislature shouldn’t force it – and yes, ECU is more than a bit hypocritcal since you don’t see them filling their schedule w/ other NC schools where they would be the routine favorite.

  16. stormin norman 09/24/2008 at 1:37 PM #

    I love playing ECU. Being from Eastern NC, ECU is a great game and one that we will win 70% of the time if we play them year in and year out. Forgetting the dollars involved, the NCSU-ECU game is the biggest rivalry game in the State. Play it Labor Day weekend (like in the past) when dreams/expectations are high and you will have something huge. Late in the year doesn’t work as one of the two has usually had a bad year.

  17. tmb81 09/24/2008 at 1:39 PM #


    What years are you talking about the series suspended then resumed? We played them at home every season from 1970-1987. I do recall them causing trouble after their win in ’85 and there was debate about canceling, but we played them in 86, and won handily. 1987 was the one we all remember.

    I remember writing a better to the Ath Dept asking them not to cancel after the 1985 incident, but during the 1987 incident I recall yelling to the ECU fans sitting around me: “You’ll never play here again!”

  18. Sw0rdf1sh 09/24/2008 at 1:41 PM #

    Yeah, unfortunately ECU can only do as good as the Liberty Bowl now, and that will require more winning.

  19. bigjohn 09/24/2008 at 1:43 PM #

    So, can someone show me where TOB said we shouldn’t play ECU? He has 2 great wins in 2 years, and you can say what you want, but last Saturday was a great night in CF and far surpassed beating JMU. Talk about nothing to gain! I have made the last 2 trips to Greenville, and can’t say I have had a better time at any away games, other than maybe Clemson and VT. ECU has a really good team this year, so the win is a large feather in our cap this season.

    There are some really nice people from ECU (a lot of them are the GOOD teachers in our schools) who behaved just fine at the game. You guys need to find a real cause. I want another AD as much as most, but this is not the reason.

  20. whitefang 09/24/2008 at 1:46 PM #

    gcpack – Of course you are correct. I was just flashing back to the Peach Bowl game I was at when we lost by 3 points at the end. I was dreaming of another shot at that some time in the future because I still have nightmares about that game!

  21. Rick 09/24/2008 at 2:00 PM #

    “I just like to be on a level playing field with UNC, so that’s why I think it’s very important to us,” Fowler said. “We’re supposed to compete with them, but they’ve had [greater support from student fees] for three or four years now. They’ve been able to get a lot of things done in the last three or four years that we have not been able to.””

    Is this Fowler setting expectations?

  22. Noah 09/24/2008 at 2:32 PM #

    The 1986 game was Sheridan’s first game at the helm, wasn’t it?

    I was at the beach for that game and didn’t go. The first half must have been played around dusk or so. I was out on the beach goofing off and brought a little battery radio out there to listen. We were down 10-0 at the half and I remember thinking, “Here we go again. New coach, same results.”

    Then we scored 38 unanswered points (i think) in the second half. I was stunned. I think we tied Pitt (who was a good team) the next week on Cofer’s FG and then we beat Maryland (who was also pretty good, with Bobby Ross as their coach). That’s when we got cocky and got smacked down by Georgia Tech in Atlanta.

    1987 was bad though. Horrible game and obviously really ugly. It was more than tearing down the goal posts. Those fans put a lot of people in danger. You’ve got drunks and idiots at every game, but they were out of control that year.

  23. Daily Update 09/24/2008 at 2:32 PM #

    I like the ECU game. Saturday was a great atmosphere for a noon game. I didn’t see any problems with their fans and tailgated with several of them. We have to have 4 OOC games per year. This year’s schedule is perfect IMO (though it didn’t time very well with this year’s team). USC, USF, ECU and a cupcake is exactly what I would like to see every year. Don’t bother with the top programs from BCS conferences, getting our asses handed to us does us no good. But pick middle programs from the SEC(USC) or Big 12(Texas Tech), thrown in a Big East team(Pitt, USF), someone from Conference USA(Southern Miss or ECU) and then a div 1-AA game.

    The reason this was posted was because I couldn’t believe that Lee Fowler was basically talking shit in the media. I also wouldn’t be surprised if Terry Holland and Skip Holtz comment.

    IF ECU truly didn’t want to schedule us every year, then clearly that is because they like spread themselves around playing UVa, VPI, W. Va and other teams in their recruiting region getting exposure.

  24. McPete 09/24/2008 at 2:49 PM #

    I would enjoy continuing this series with ECU if ESPN would recognize it as a rivalry game and broadcast it every year in a good slot. i kept hearing over and over again during last weeks’ broadcast about how great a rivalry it was, and underrated, etc, etc. but in reality the only reason it was picked up by the flagship channel is because ecu was an undefeated national darling with a top 15 ranking. last year, ecu won 9 games, and our matchup in greenville was on something called CSTV, which time warner only offers in its sports tier.

    and lets not do another home and home with southern miss either. no tv for that game two years ago. how about a mac opponent, since TOB and staff are trying to recruit in Indiana and Ohio anyway.

  25. packpigskinfan23 09/24/2008 at 3:06 PM #

    SFN- I think you misunderstood the point to my post. Its not so much that they want to raise the fees that bothers me(a student), its the way that Fowler is going about it- by comparing us to UNC. Since when does Fowler want to be competitive with UNC? ONLY WHEN IT COMES TO MONEY!

    I dont like the fact that fees could be raised, but I understand the importance of staying with the times. However the times are also going pretty bad for the economy, and I see this as a way to make up for lost donations due to the economy and some supporters withdrawing their money due to performance on the field.

    If our Athletic Dept would stop treating students like second-rate fans, things could be a lot different.

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