Coach Mo Injects Excitement Into the Upcoming ECU Football Season
Fresh off their second day of fall practice, Scottie Montgomery, his staff and key players met with the press for the 2018 Media Day at Murphy Center on the campus of ECU.
Montgomery has lofty goals coming into this season. He wants to get his team turned around from a pair of 3-9 seasons and find a way to get his squad into a bowl and contention for an AAC title. To do that he will have to get off to a fast start and get the most out everybody.
“Wow, finally the offseason is over and we are at the beginning of the 2018 season. Really, really happy to be able to say that. We reported to camp with really a big boost of energy from our Pirate Club and the Pirate Nation with the opening of the renovations at the Ward Football Building,” Montgomery said, “It’s been really awesome to be able to come back and start with the juice that we have.”
“We had a really, really productive offseason and not to the point of just saying what Coach C did. This was our most productive football offseason. I think our coaches did a better job this year than in previous years of making sure that when we rolled into camp that it would be like an extended year,” said Montgomery.
“Going all the way back from the beginning when we came out of January we wanted to start spring ball early to get our defensive scheme, our tweaked offensive scheme and then our special teams unit ready to go. We really had about eight straight months of football which is a really good thing to have. Our kids really responded to it.”
Montgomery emphasized that the return of Leroy Henley, Mydreon Vines and Blake Proehl, who are all coming off injuries that kept them from participating in any of the games last season, will make for an even deeper receiver corp.
The third year ECU head coach says he expects great things on special teams under former ECU player and veteran special teams coach Kirk Doll. He says its the one phase of the game where guys on offense and defense can play on the same unit to compete together and it could turn out to be one of the team’s biggest boosts.
“This is the first year that I can say after day two that I can say our punt unit and our kickoff return unit is already completely installed. I don’t think I’ve ever been anywhere where two of the most important phases of special teams is already installed and our our kids not only know their positions but who is backing them up and who is rolling.”
“I think this team is prepared already. Now we just get ready to play A&T,” Montgomery said.
Getting things up and running under new defensive coordinator David Blackwell is going to be a paramount component to any potential success on the gridiron this year at ECU. The Pirates are reportedly three deep along the defensive line under new defensive line coach Rod Wright who is a former All-American out of Texas and a former NFL player.
Kendall Futrell has been dominant at defensive end and free safety Nolan Johnson has been tabbed by Coach Mo as the best newcomer on the team.
“Defensively there is no secret that we have to get better than we were last year and that’s exactly what we plan on doing. People asked me my expectations of the defense and it’s simple. Hold them to one point less than the offense.”
Montgomery says he’s spend the most time together with new defensive coordinator David Blackwell.
On offense, Coach Mo wants to get four yards a clip from his running game that returns both Hussein Howe and Darius Pinnix along with Trace Christian who could also end up doing some damage at running back.
Montgomery says the first plus offensively is the talent at quarterback where Reid Herring takes over and will have plenty of talent behind him in the form of true freshman Holton Ahlers and Kingley Ifedi. He says they all know the terminology and it’s the only terminology that they’ve ever known in college so it should pay dividends.
At wide receiver, Deondre Farrier comes in improved and senior wideout Trevon Brown should prove to be one of the best receivers in the league.
“Trevon Brown is a superstar player and we have got to utilize him and get him the ball,” Montgomery said.
Montgomery said he even hopes to get back to the ECU tradition of exciting trick plays and stated that recruiting a better athlete will result in playing better football.
PirateIllustrated.com brings you Coach Montgomery’s Media Day Press Conference audio along with comments from ECU Assistant Coaches and media day comments from key ECU Players as Rivals.com Pirate fall camp coverage continues.