ECU looks to get over .500 for the first time in Mike Houston era.
Who: East Carolina (2-2) vs Old Dominion (1-2)
When: Saturday, September 28, 2019 – 6:00 P.M. EST
Where: S.B Ballard Stadium, Norfolk, VA
How To Watch: ESPN+
Line: ODU -3.0
Weather: Partly Cloudy, 80°at kickoff
East Carolina defeated William and Mary 19-7
Old Dominion lost to Virginia 17-28
What You Should Know About The Monarchs
The first thing you should know about this ODU football team is that they’re a completely different team from last year. ODU has added 30 new transfers and 42 total players since the Pirates saw them a season ago. Eric Kumah, a wide receiver transfer from Virginia Tech is arguably the most impactful transfer as the team’s leading receiver to this point. Kumah has hauled in eight catches for 93 yards from fellow transfer QB Stone Smartt. ECU will likely emphasize limiting the Smartt to Kumah hookups this week.
Old Dominion has seen great improvement so far this season on the defensive side of the ball compared to last year’s abysmal campaign. David Blackwell, last season’s Pirate Defensive Coordinator, is the Monarch DC this year. He was able to lead ECU to one of the most improved defenses in the country last year and looks to be doing the same for the Monarchs this year. Blackwell’s defense is setting the tone through the ground game by only allowing 2.9 yards per carry and 89.7 yards per contest so far. ECU will need to get it done through the air Saturday if they want to come out with a win.
The Pirates really need to win this game if they’re going to have much hope of going bowling this season. They’re likely to be favored in only one game for the rest of the season, but I think if they can come out on top Saturday they’ll have a shot at it. This is also a huge game for the Pirates because of the game it leads up to. After this game, ECU will head back to Greenville to play a prime-time game against Temple Thursday night on ESPN. They could really use some momentum going into the huge conference opener.
I really like ECU’s chances against the Monarchs but they have been absolutely terrible on the road the last few years. The last time ECU won a non-conference road game was back in 2014 at Virginia Tech. The Monarchs also played Virginia and Virginia Tech extremely tough this year while nearly coming out with a win in both of the contests. With that being said, I like ODU to pull out a huge home victory.