ECU Hopes To Get Navy Off Schedule Offensively On Early Downs
ECU is fresh off of a 48-9 win over Gardner-Webb where the Pirates had two running backs with over a hundred yards rushing and got good play from quarterback Holton Ahlers.
Ahlers passed for 195 yards on 18 of 29 passing with one touchdown pass to Blake Proehl.
Meanwhile, Darius Pinnix got untracked with his best game of his career, rushing for134 yards rushing on 21 carries. He got plenty of help late in the game from freshman Demetrius Mauney who collected 107 yards of his own on just 13 carries.
Mauney's performance found him a place on the depth chart for this week's encounter at Navy.
ECU head coach Mike Houston talked about the things the Pirates have to do to pick up their second win of the season against a disciplined Midshipmen squad that had last week off after a big opening week 45-7 win over Holy Cross.
"There is no doubt there is no doubt that we will see a pretty drastic increase in competition this week going to Navy. We have a one game sampling of them right now," said Houston, "They made some staff changes after last season and they were not pleased with the way things went last year and I'm sure they rededicated a lot of things this season to get things going."
"What I saw in the Holy Cross game is what we have traditionally viewed as Navy football. It looked like Navy has always looked to me," Houston stated, "Coach Niumatalolo has always done an incredible job with his program up there. He is first class in every manner and what he has done there is so impressive."
Houston sees the task ahead but also sees the potential for something good to come out of Saturday's game and he will look to find ways to limit Navy offensively and get the most of it from an offensive perspective as well.
"We have a great task ahead of us but I also see that as a great opportunity," said Houston, "It will be a great matchup and we're really looking forward to it."
Houston talked about what ECU has to do defensively in order to be successful in Annapolis on Saturday.
"The thing I think you've got to be able to match their physicality and you've got to do a great job of tackling and you've got to be opportunistic in that sometimes you can see them make a mistake with the ball handling because you're meshing, you're pitching. The ball is loose at times," Houston told PirateIllustrated.com, "You've got to be opportunistic in that you take advantage when the ball is on the ground we've got to get it."
"If you can ever get the off schedule. If you're second and six, second and four, you're in trouble because you're getting ready to be third and two and that's going to be first down. As long as you're on schedule, it's almost unstoppable but if you can ever get them second and ten, third and nine - those situations, they're not quite as effective. I think being successful on those early downs, if you can ever do that then you can give them some problems."
Catch PI AUDIO of Mike Houston's complete Tuesday press conference from Murphy Center on the campus of ECU here on PirateIllustrated.com and stay tuned for more as PI coverage of Navy week continues.