GREENVILLE, N.C. – East Carolina has added a home game against Gardner-Webb to complete its 2019 non-conference football schedule according to an announcement by ECU Director of Athletics Jeff Compher on Wednesday.
The contest, which is currently set to be played Sept. 7 at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium, will mark the first-ever football meeting between the Pirates and Runnin’ Bulldogs and will be ECU’s sixth matchup in as many years against a Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) opponent following visits by North Carolina Central (2014), Towson (2015), Western Carolina (2016), James Madison (2017) and North Carolina A&T (2018).
In addition to Gardner-Webb, East Carolina’s 2019 non-conference slate features previously announced games against NC State (road) on Aug. 31, Virginia Tech (home) on Sept. 21 and Old Dominion (road) on Sept. 28.
“The ability to schedule non-conference games against in-state opponents remains a priority for us,” second-year ECU Head Football Coach Scottie Montgomery said. “Gardner-Webb is a program which I’m both familiar with and very respectful of. We’ve made it a point to extend our reach into western North Carolina and this opportunity is certainly consistent with that.”
The Runnin’ Bulldogs are under the leadership of Carroll McCray, who will begin his fifth season as head coach at his alma mater in 2017. Gardner-Webb, which initiated its program in 1970 and currently competes in the Big South Conference, has faced three Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) opponents since 2013 – Marshall, Wake Forest and Ohio – and will play at Wyoming this fall.