Behind the Box Score
by Josh Spence

All across the country on Saturday evening, scores were coming in.  Interested sports fans, media members, and alumni everywhere were checking online, watching SportsCenter, and reading bottom lines in an attempt to see college football scores from around the country.  How did their team do?  What about the team we face next week? Or who is the conference leader.  Scores come in and opinions are formed.  It is the nature of college football and sports in general. 

What most fans don’t see is the truth behind the box score.  They see USM 33, ECU 7 and think the Pirates are terrible again.  What they don’t see is what really could have been.  Most fans didn’t see a potential halftime lead turn into a 20-7 halftime deficit.  Most fans didn’t see a dominating ECU offense, consistently march up the field on the Southern Miss defense, only to fumble their chances away.  Fans across the country don’t see a program that despite a 1-3 record, is already a much better team than it has been in any current student's tenure. 

The fact is that ECU is a much improved football team under Skip Holtz.  The Pirates are through the most difficult part of their schedule.  Don’t get me wrong, there will be tough contests ahead, but compared to the Pirates early schedule, the rest seem much easier.  The art of turning a football program around does not happen overnight, evidenced by the Pirates 1-3 record.  However, with a break or two going the other way, ECU legitimately could have won each of its first four games.  Considering the last several years in the Pirate Nation, that’s all we can ask for.

Josh Spence