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Scottie Montgomery out at ECU

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We all saw it coming, and it’s finally here.

NCAA Football: Connecticut at East Carolina James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

It seemed inevitable even before the season began that Scottie Montgomery would need a miracle to come back in 2019. In the midst of another underachieving season, the Pirates have decided to go in a different direction.

Montgomery was put in a tough position right off the bat. Many fans didn’t believe that his predecessor, Ruffin McNeill, should have been fired after the 2015 season. Things didn’t get better after that. ECU went 6-26 in Montgomery’s three seasons as head coach, and was consistently stuck with UConn at the bottom of Underdog Dynatsy’s power rankings. One thing that didn’t help him out was his poor defenses.

The Pirates had arguably the worst defenses in the conference the last three years, including the worst defense in the country last year. In a conference know for offense, ECU couldn’t adapt to give their team a chance. Giving up 1,363 points in 32 games (42.6 per game) isn’t going to win you football games, no matter how good the offense might be.

ECU and Montgomery have reached a mutual agreement that he will not coach the final game against North Carolina State this weekend. Defensive coordinator David Blackwell will take over his duties. Kind of insulting to replace a man with the side of the ball that got him fired.

Whoever takes over for Montgomery at ECU will need to replace All-Conference receiver Trevon Brown and fix a defense that has been horrendous even in AAC standards. They will, however, return a good core on both sides of the ball. Freshman Holton Ahlers has tremendous potential, and he has plenty of weapons around him to make this team dangerous. A competent defense needs to be part of the equation for that to happen.