Gov. McCrory, Cooper, back ECU joining Big 12 Conference

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Both candidates for governor are now backing ECU’s goal to join the Big 12, a power five conference that announced it was looking to add teams. Governor Pat McCrory and Attorney General Roy Cooper both released statements endorsing the idea Wednesday.

This comes less than 24 hours after WNCT interview Greenville Mayor Allen Thomas, who called on state leaders to endorse the idea.

The move would put ECU in the national spotlight, and lead to football match ups in Greenville with the likes of Texas and Oklahoma.

“East Carolina University is positioned both institutionally and athletically to be a successful and and valuable member of the Big 12 Conference,” Gov. McCrory said. “Our state has a rich tradition of public universities with both excellent academic prowess and deep commitments to intercollegiate athletics. East Carolina University follow in that rich tradition and is prepared to strengthen that legacy.”

Cooper also praised what the university has done for the state, and how much it could add to a power five conference.

Academically, ECU is an institution of higher education with nationally recognized undergraduate, graduate, and medical programs. It is a critical component of the crown jewel of North Carolina, the University of North Carolina higher education system,” Cooper said. “In addition, ECU Pirate Athletics is a source of pride for fans across North Carolina. I am confident ECU would make for an excellent member Institution for the Big 12.”

To read Gov. McCrory’s full statement, click here.

To read AG Cooper’s statement, click here.

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