ECU keeping eye on NCAA landscape

Published 7:04 pm Monday, September 19, 2011

The university leadership and the Pirate Nation have been steadfast and undaunted in preparing and positioning our athletics program to be a viable conference member that wins championships on and off the field and has the opportunity to participate in BCS bowls. The achievements include $92 million in facility improvements and additions, growing football attendance figures that produced an average of 49,665 fans per game in 2010 and record football season ticket sales reaching over 24,000 this fall.
In addition, statewide television viewership of ECU games equals the top five DMA areas in the nation for a football program that has won two of the last three Conference USA championships and earned five consecutive bowl appearances.
Recent announcements related to conference realignment have created an atmosphere of urgency and uncertainty across the nation for institutions, athletics departments and fan bases at those institutions. The leadership at East Carolina University is actively engaged in conference realignment discussions and remains aggressive in positioning the athletics program in an ever-changing conference landscape.
At this time, no one knows exactly how the future of the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) will look. While many of the developments are not in East Carolina’s control, we will continue to work diligently to influence any realignment possibilities as opportunities present themselves. There will be intense competition for any available automatic-qualifying BCS slots, which could include anything from a realigned C-USA to any number of other conference configurations.
In these uncertain times, we must remain focused and determined on what we can control and what has brought success to our program thus far. For our coaches and student-athletes, that assignment is to prepare, compete and win in the classroom and on the field, and for our loyal Pirate fans, it is imperative that we continue to fill our stadiums and arenas in Purple and Gold.
Steve Ballard
Chancellor, East Carolina University
Terry Holland
Athletics Director, East Carolina University