GREENVILLE, N.C. (ECU Media Relations) – East Carolina, which is playing for the eighth consecutive week and second time in five days, hopes to sharpen its focus on bowl eligibility when it hosts Temple in an American Athletic Conference clash at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium on Thursday beginning at 7 p.m.
The Pirates will try to make it two in a row for the second time this season after booking a 30-17 win against Tulsa on Saturday. The contest against the Owls will also mark the first of three weekday night tilts this year for ECU, which follows with a Friday appearance at Connecticut (Oct. 30) and another Thursday outing at UCF (Nov. 19) for its last road game of the 2015 campaign.
East Carolina Records and Streaks
- Qualified for 10 bowl appearances since 2000 (three-straight, eight of the last nine years) …
- Has won 26 of the last 31 games when scoring 30 or more points …
- Has lost 14-straight games when scoring 20 or less points (19-14 vs. UCF in `09/last win) …
- Has won 18 of the last 19 games when gaining 200 or more rushing yards …
- Has won 26-straight games when leading at the half …
- Has won 11 of the last 12, 15 of the last 17 (and 19 of the last 22) home games …
- Has won 13 of the last 15 conference home games (dating back to 2011) …
- Has won 12-straight conference home games in the month of October (last loss in 2006) …
- Has won two-straight games against nationally-ranked opponents …
Officially, East Carolina leads the series 8-4 … On the field, Temple has captured wins in five of the 12 matchups, but the Owls’ 45-28 victory in 1986 was later forfeited to the Pirates because of the utilization of an ineligible player … Including the forfeit, the Pirates have triumphs in five of the seven meetings in Philadelphia, but only own a narrow 3-2 edge in Greenville … The series dates back to 1982 when ECU competed as an independent.
At Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium – 18-3 Since 2012
East Carolina’s all-time record at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium is 180-87-1 (.674) … The Pirates opened the facility on Sept. 21, 1963 with a 20-10 win over Brian Piccolo and the Wake Forest Demon Deacons in front of 17,000 fans and celebrated the stadium’s 50th anniversary in 2013 … Before an early 3-0 record this fall, consecutive 5-1 marks in 2014, 2013 and 2012, a 3-3 ledger in 2011 and a 4-2 clip in 2010, ECU won a combined 10 of 12 home matchups in `09 (6-1) and `08 (4-1) … Overall, East Carolina has turned in 39 winning campaigns at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium since 1963 … The Pirates currently enjoy a run of victories in 11 of the last 12 games and 15 of the last 17.
The Pirate Nation – 7.8 Million Strong
East Carolina has always been able to claim plenty of hometown support, even more so when playing at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium during the fall – establishing itself as a conference attendance leader on an annual basis … In all, a total of 7,818,332 fans have seen the Pirates in action since 1963, and in the last seven-plus years, ECU has averaged 45,824 (2,016,269/44 regular season games) … Since the completion of a 7,000-seat expansion project in 2010 that pushed Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium’s capacity to 50,000, the Pirates have drawn 1,547,046 fans – recently cracking the 1.5 million mark when 50,514 watched ECU down Virginia Tech on Sept. 26 … ECU set back-to-back school records in total attendance and season average attendance in 2011, breaking `10 marks (297,987/49,665) with 300,069 and 50,012 figures that year.
NOTE: ECU’s student ticket allotment of 15,000 ranks ninth nationally, trailing only Texas A&M (31,000), Ohio State (28,333), Penn State (21,500), Florida (19,500), Alabama (17,500), Texas (17,000), Florida State (16,000) and Georgia (16,000).
Turning Up The Heat – Part 1
East Carolina’s defense has turned up the heat on its pass rush in the last three games, netting a combined 16 quarterback drops against SMU (8.0), BYU (4.0) and Tulsa (4.0) after collecting just a combined five in its first four contests … Senior OLB Montese Overton has accounted for nearly half of the total, producing a school single-game record-tying (Rod Coleman/1997) 4.0 vs. the Mustangs before adding 2.0 against the Cougars and 1.5 vs. the Golden Hurricane … Overton currently stands ninth nationally among all pass rushers (7.5/-60 yards) … ECU was 99th nationally (1.3 spg) prior to its visit to Dallas on Oct. 3 and now ranks 17th (3.0).
Turning Up The Heat – Part 2
The Pirates were credited with nine quarterback pressures (i.e. hurries) against Tulsa, the most since harassing NC State’s Russell Wilson 11 times during ECU’s 33-27 win over the Wolfpack at Dowdy-Stadium on Oct. 16, 2010 – five years later, almost to the day … East Carolina has also knocked down 17 passes in its last three games (14 in first four).
Junior IR Isaiah Jones has caught at least one pass in 30-straight games heading into the Temple contest … The streak, which began with a two-catch, 27-yard effort vs. North Carolina on Sept. 28, 2013, currently ranks 13th among active receivers … His 10-catch effort at BYU two weeks ago represented his fi fth double-digit reception outing, while his 130-yard performance against Navy on Sept. 19 was the seventh triple-digit yard total of his career.
Additionally, Jones has 13 career touchdown receptions and the Pirates are 11-2 when he snares a scoring catch (only losses have comes against Florida and BYU on Sept. 12 and Oct. 10, respectively, this year) … Of his 13 TD grabs, over half (seven) have been against non-conference opponents in two-plus seasons.
ECU’s Double-Option Offense
Both East Carolina junior quarterbacks have delivered effective and impact-producing relief appearances over the last four weeks … After Blake Kemp opened the Virginia Tech, SMU and Tulsa contests, James Summers came off the bench to help rally East Carolina to wins over the Hokies, Mustangs and Golden Hurricane … Summers made his first collegiate start at BYU and Kemp nearly completed an improbable comeback from a 17-point deficit in Provo … A closer look at all four recent calls from the bullpen:
- James Summers – Against the Hokies, he posted the second-highest single game positional rushing total in school history (169 yards, most by a Pirate QB since 1979) and threw his first career TD pass before finishing with 279 yards of total offense — also accounting for three of ECU’s five TDs … Was 9-of-10 for 153 yards with a pair of TDs through the air at SMU, while also adding 85 yards and two more scores on the ground … Passed and rushed for touchdowns against Tulsa, while also completing 11-of-16 throws for 127 yards and netting 44 more on the ground (12 carries).
- Blake Kemp – Passed for a career-high 371 yards and two touchdowns against BYU … Completed 77.8 percent of his throws (28-of-36) and engineered two fourth-quarter TD drives operating in the “two-minute drill” (85 yards/1:52, 63 yards/2:36) to erase a 17-point deficit and put the Pirates in a position to even game with 4:01 left.
A Perfect Defensive Denominator
Since taking over the ECU program in 2010, Ruffin McNeill is 10-0 when the Pirates score a defensive touchdown (1/2010, 0/2011, 3/2012, 3/2013, 2/2014 and 1/2015).
On This Day In Pirates’ History (5-5)
Oct. 22, 1948 — Newport News Apprentice 20, East Carolina 6
Oct. 22, 1955 — East Tennessee State 34, East Carolina 20
Oct. 22, 1960 — East Carolina 21, Newberry 0
Oct. 22, 1966 — East Carolina 27, The Citadel 17
Oct. 22, 1977 — East Carolina 34, The Citadel 16
Oct. 22, 1983 — Florida 24, East Carolina 17
Oct. 22, 1988 — Syracuse 38, East Carolina 14
Oct. 22, 1994 — East Carolina 28, Tulsa 21
Oct. 22, 2005 — Memphis 27, East Carolina 24
Oct. 22, 2011 — East Carolina 38, Navy 35