East Carolina Picked 4th in AAC Media Poll


Dec 28, 2013; Charlotte, NC, USA; Cincinnati Bearcats running back Ralph Abernathy (1) runs the ball during the third quarter against the North Carolina Tar Heels in the Belk Bowl at Bank of America Stadium. Carolina defeated Cincinnati 39-17. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

The American Athletic Conference had its media day yesterday. The eleven schools of the second year conference sent representatives to meet the press. The AAC media also released its preseason poll, which picked the Cincinnati Bearcats to win the conference. The Bearcats last appearance was a loss in the Belk Bowl to the North Carolina Tar Heels.

East Carolina was picked fourth. This is not so much an indictment of the Pirates as it is the indication of strength in the top tier of the American. UCF beat Baylor in the Fiesta Bowl, lost quarterback Blake Bortles, and was picked second. Houston, with a recent string of success dating back to the days of Kevin Sumlin, was picked third.

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The full rankings look like this:

AAC Media Poll

1. Cincinnati (17) 311
2. UCF (7) 296
3. Houston (6) 268
4. East Carolina 262
5. SMU 158
6. USF 157
7. Memphis 133
8. Temple 105
9. UConn 98
9. Tulane 98
11. Tulsa 94

So it looks like the AAC media thinks the Pirates have their work cut out for themselves. No media member felt like granting ECU a first place vote. Does this mean gloom and doom for the Pirates?

No, any roster with senior leadership like ECU’s is a threat in any conference. UCF is likely to take a step back from last year’s glories. Cincinnati did not offer much resistance to the Fedora spread, so I hold no hope that they can withstand the Air Raid attack.

With any new creation, birth will be an interesting process. The new AAC is there for the taking of any program that seizes the opportunity. Why not ECU? It’s not like the Pirates have never seen these guys before.