football Edit

Coach Mo Discusses His Decision to Change Directions on Defense

Pirate Defensive line coach Robert Prunty takes over as ECU DC replacing Kenwick Thompson.
Pirate Defensive line coach Robert Prunty takes over as ECU DC replacing Kenwick Thompson. ( photo)

Associate head coach and defensive line coach Robert Prunty has added defensive coordinator to his list of duties effective immediately.

After an 0-2 start, the Pirates take on No. 16 Virginia Tech next Saturday in Greenville.

Prunty served as co-defensive coordinator at Cincinnati for the last three years prior to his appointment at ECU in January and is the former head coach at Hargrave Military Academy.

Thompson who arrived at ECU after spending two years as linebacker's coach at Vanderbilt, had high hopes after joining Scottie Montgomery's staff on December 23, 2015.

"We made some transition in the offseason and thought we did a good job with recruiting and putting a lot of talent on the defensive side of the ball," Montgomery told, "The first week we got off to a slow start and we really challenged everybody to get better this week in some way and I didn't necessarily thing we got better."

"I thought we needs a little bit of a change in direction. I'm really, really thankful to have the ability to work with Kenwick (Thompson) and he was a great person. The fit for us right now, we feel like we need to go in a different direction."

In the initial press release Montgomery expressed disappointment but felt a change was warranted after giving up an average of 616 yards a game in the first two games against James Madison and West Virginia.

"While these decisions are difficult to make, both from a timing and personal standpoint, my responsibility is to sustain the best interest for our program," Montgomery said. " We appreciate Coach Thompson's efforts, but I feel a change in direction is needed at this time."

Montgomery met with the press Sunday afternoon where he discussed his decision. Catch the very latest from the PI Sports Desk on PI Audio.